Golden man sentenced to 8 years in prison for fatal head-on crash

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BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. — A Golden man was sentenced to eight years in prison Monday for driving while intoxicated in a wrong-way, head-on crash on Interstate 70 that killed a 30-year-old woman in Summit County last year.

Sebastian Rivera, 24, pleaded guilty in November to vehicular homicide, reckless vehicular assault and driving under the influence in the April 13 crash, the Fifth Judicial District Attorney’s Office said.

Rivera will also serve three years of mandatory parole after he’s released from prison.

The district attorney’s office said Rivera was driving a 2010 Audi eastbound in the westbound lanes just before midnight between the Frisco and Copper Mountain exits when he collided with a vehicle.

briannamartzBrianna Martz was sitting in the front passenger seat of the vehicle Rivera hit and was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver was seriously injured.

The district attorney’s office said Rivera drank alcohol after getting off work in Breckenridge before the collision. Police also recovered marijuana residue and accessories from his vehicle.

Toxicology reports showed Rivera had low levels of alcohol and THC in his system, the district attorney’s office said.

“The combination of drug use, alcohol and poor judgment played a deadly role in this terrible event, which took the life of one woman, injured another and devastated several others,” 5th Judicial District Attorney Bruce Brown said in a written statement.

“The use by the defendant of both alcohol and marijuana magnified his impairment and was a recipe for tragedy.”

The eight-year sentence was the maximum under terms of the plea agreement.

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