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OC Driver Sentenced In Death Of Bicyclist

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SANTA ANA (AP) — A 30-year-old Southern California woman has been sentenced to six years in state prison for the drunken driving death of a bicyclist four years ago.

The Orange County district attorney’s office says Michelle Nicole Stearns of San Juan Capistrano was sentenced Friday. She had pleaded guilty in March to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated.

Sheriff’s investigators said her blood-alcohol level was twice the legal limit to drive when she lost control of her BMW in Dana Point and killed 32-year-old Jose Umberto Barranco-Patino in 2007.

Barranco-Patino, who bussed tables at a local restaurant, was riding his bike home from work. The Los Angeles Times reports he suffered severe head injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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