'2 Drunk 2 Care' Kayla Mendoza Sentenced to 24 Years For Fatal DUI Crash

By McCarton Ackerman 05/05/15

Kayla Mendoza pleaded guilty last February to two counts of DUI manslaughter for her role in the November 2013 crash.

Kayla Mendoza
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The Florida woman who tweeted that she was “2 drunk 2 care” just hours before her involvement in a fatal DUI crash has been sentenced to 24 years behind bars.

Kayla Mendoza, 22, pleaded guilty last February to two counts of DUI manslaughter for her role in the November 2013 crash. Authorities say she went to a bar after work in Coral Springs and had two fish bowl-sized margaritas before getting behind the wheel. Her head-on collision with the vehicle killed both 21-year-olds Kaitlyn Ferrante and Marisa Catronio, while Mendoza also sustained serious injuries. Police later determined that her blood alcohol level was double the legal limit.

“I know that I have made mistakes and the outcome is so much more than I could ever imagine,” said Mendoza through tears before her sentencing. “No matter how much time passes by, [Ferrante and Catronio] will never leave my heart. I think about them every day and I regret my choices every day.” However, she also claimed to not remember deciding to get behind the wheel that night.

Mendoza faced a maximum sentence of 30 years for her charges, which the families of both Ferrante and Catronio asked a judge to impose. Ferrante’s mother, Christine, said in court during an April 2014 hearing that she didn’t want Mendoza “to ever feel the sunshine. I want her to stay locked away forever.”

The Twitter account of Mendoza didn’t do much to win public sympathy during her trial. Several of her posts bragged about her wild ways and she described herself as a so-called Pot Princess. Some of her tweets included “I break all my bongs cuz I have butter fingers” and “I have a test at 8am, why am I drunk right now.”

When she completes her sentence, Mendoza will also serve an additional six years of probation and have a lifetime ban from driving.

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McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.