By Gina Kim
MODESTO, CA – Nearly four years after their father’s murder, two women delivered victim impact statements before the jury in a sentencing hearing here in Stanislaus County Superior Court this week for Jose Gutierrez and Bailey-Martin Sanchez, who pleaded guilty to murdering the victim on April 28, 2018.
“There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think of my dad and what they did to him,” stated one of the victim’s daughters, adding “I have to live with picturing my dad being beaten and helplessly ran over with a car multiple times.”
Gutierrez faced more serious charges for unlawful killing with malice. Sanchez, on the other hand, was convicted of unlawful killing without malice upon sudden quarrel in the heat of passion, as well as an additional misdemeanor charge for driving another person’s automobile without their consent.
The victim’s daughters broke into tears early into their statements, followed soon by several other members of the jury.
The family expressed deep despair over memories of fishing trips and family recipes they would never experience again. Having been their only surviving parent, and a grandfather to their children, the victim was described as an irreplaceable pillar of support.
“I not only miss the person I had, but the life we could’ve had. I also mourn the life we should’ve had. They took all of their future memories from us,” said the victim’s daughter.
Gutierrez read his own statement expressing remorse for his actions, noting. “I hope you can all have closure, moving onto the next chapter of your lives knowing I sincerely apologize and take full responsibility for this.”
Judge Shawn Bessel sentenced Gutierrez to 15 years to life for second degree murder. Sanchez received a midterm of six years and eight months.
Seemingly in response to Gutierrez’ statement, Judge Bessel added, “Keep in mind that there is no closure when it comes to loss of a family member, loss of a father, loss of a buddy, a fishing partner, a dad.”