Man-on-car murderer Sherry Lynn Wilkins is facing up to life for a gruesome hit-and-run in which she drove two miles through a Los Angeles suburb with a dying man on her windshield. The district attorney's office announced Wednesday that it would be postponing sentencing until June.
Wilkins, a 52-year-old substance-abuse counselor, struck and killed 31-year-old Phillip Moreno in Torrance in November 2012. After the initial impact, Wilkins drove on with the dying Moreno still on her windshield, the Associated Press reported
According to the prosecution, Wilkins' two-mile-long drive only came to an end when passersby and other motorists, realizing what had happened, surrounded her car at a red light and forced her to stop. Moreno's body had punched a hole through the glass on the passenger's side.
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At the time of her arrest, the substance-abuse counselor's blood-alcohol level was nearly twice that of the legal limit. According to police, Wilkins had two previous felony convictions before the hit-and-run murder.
Wilkins was convicted earlier in the month of second-degree murder, drunken driving and hit-and-run. At the time of her conviction, Wilkins was said to have showed no response as the Superior Court jury returned with its verdict.
"The way she treated Phillip Moreno struck at human dignity," Deputy District Attorney John Harlan, the lead prosecutor, said after the verdict, the AP noted
Wilkins admitted to police that she had been drinking on the night of the hit-and-run, but claimed she was not drunk, telling authorities instead that she had been "self-medicating" in preparation for an upcoming knee surgery with three airplane-size bottles of vodka, and a can of Budweiser mixed with Clamato juice.
While testifying at the trial, Wilkins said she began using heroin early on in life to deal with chronic pain caused by a car accident when she was 15 in which she severely damaged her back and shattered bones in her ankles and legs. Her heroin use eventually became an addiction when she says that she found using heroin for the pain was "cheaper than going to the doctor."
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