Surveillance video shows underage driver drinking beer before fa - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Surveillance video shows underage driver drinking beer before fatal hit and run

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Jessica Medsker, age 20 Jessica Medsker, age 20

SAN DIEGO (NEWS8 / CNS) – Surveillance video shows an underage woman taking sips of alcohol 14 times before she hit and killed a 16-year-old boy in Tierrasanta.

The 20-year-old driver, Jessica Rene Medsker, fled the scene of the accident on the evening of March 9 and never turned herself in.  San Diego Police arrested her six days later.

Medsker pleaded guilty last month to a felony charge of hit-and-run causing death. The defendant -- who has no prior record -- faces anywhere from probation to four years in prison.

Tuesday’s sentencing was postponed to July 20 after prosecutors filed a motion detailing Medsker’s alcoholic consumption on the evening of the fatal collision.

Following Medsker’s arrest, San Diego County District Attorney investigators collected surveillance video from BJ’s restaurant in La Jolla.

The video showed Medsker’s boyfriend, Lewis Cornwell, age 25, ordering and drinking beer.

The court filing said Medsker reached over and drank from her boyfriend’s alcoholic beverage “14 different times between 8:44 p.m. and 10:02 p.m,” which was 78 minutes before the crash on Santo Rd.

The motion included multiple still images of Medsker taking drinks from the beer glass.

“She was seen actively drinking from her boyfriend’s beer glass for a total of 37 seconds that evening.  By her own admission she felt a ‘small buzz’ as a result of the drinking,” the filing alleged.

Investigators were unable to charge Medsker with DUI because she fled the scene of the accident and her blood alcohol level could not be determined.

Her conviction is considered a "wobbler," meaning a judge could reduce it to a misdemeanor at the court's discretion, said Deputy District Attorney Andrew Aguilar.

Superior Court Judge Polly Shamoon rescheduled the sentencing hearing to next month so Medsker's attorneys can respond to the prosecution's statement in aggravation motion.

Medsker was taken into custody and was ordered held without bail pending sentencing.

Aguilar said 16-year-old Alex Funk and a friend were walking southbound in the fast lane of the 5700 block of Santo Road with their backs toward traffic around midnight on March 9. The victim's friend managed to jump onto a median to avoid being hit.

Funk's family had moved to San Diego seven months before the accident, relatives said.

A motorcyclist who was following Medsker estimated she was driving 60 mph in a 45-mph zone when her car struck the teen, according to Aguilar.

The teen victim’s grandmother, mother, and 13-year-old brother spoke in court Tuesday and tearfully urged the judge to give Medsker the maximum sentence.


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