Two teenaged drivers who engaged in a high speed street race that caused an accident which killed two people pleaded guilty to their charges in court Tuesday.
According to the California Highway Patrol, 18 year old Michael S. Johnson and 16 year old Zach Bishop were racing down the eastbound lanes of State Route 52 at around 11:45 p.m. on April 4th at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour when Bishop lost control of his vehicle and crashed, resulting in the deaths of 16 year old Jayli Campbell and 18 year old Anthony Foreman.
The front seat passenger in Bishop’s car suffered serious brain damage and spent five days in a coma, though she survived. One other passenger in the backseat was also seriously injured.
The two vehicles were reportedly driving home from a bonfire at the La Jolla Shores.
Bishop, who was tried in Juvenile Court, pleaded guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter resulting in death and was sentenced to a year in custody at a Juvenile facility in the city of Campo.
His adult aged racing opponent, Michael Johnson, pleaded guilty to a felony charge of engaging in a speed contest and is to be sentenced to 180 days in jail. The plea came on the day his case was set to go to trial.
He will also be placed on three years of probation, which will include random drug testing and volunteer work with Mothers Against Drunk Driving, or any other organization that focuses on driving-related crimes.
Johnson is set to be formally sentenced on October 10th, but will likely begin serving his time in custody on September 21st.
Mark Foreman, the father of one of the killed teens, is hopeful that the guilty plea will serve as an opportunity for the families of the victims to receive closure.
“Justice is going to play out,” Mark Foreman said. “He (Johnson) has decisions to make in his world, including serving 180 days as the judge stated, and then fulfilling his probation obligations. He’s got challenges and I recognize those challenges. They’re strong. It’s up to him to do it.”
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