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Young daughters speak out at sentencing of man who killed their parents in Long Island crash

Emotions high on Long Island at sentencing of man who killed 2 in crash
Emotions high on Long Island at sentencing of man who killed 2 in crash 02:15

MINEOLA, N.Y. - A Syosset man was sentenced Monday in a drunk driving crash last summer that killed a married couple on Long Island

Ismenia and Odalis Urena were killed last August after Sotirios Spanos crossed into their lane and crashed head on

Spanos admits to bad judgement and pled guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide, manslaughter, assault and DWI

Ismenia Urena was a newly published author. Odalis Urena was a builder who donated homes around the globe. Driving home from dinner through Lauren Hollow, Spanos crashed into them. 

"One hundred miles an hour along Northern Boulevard, fueled by anger and alcohol on a winding, curving road," Nassau County District Attorney Anne Donnelly said. 

Spanos' blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit. Prosecutors said he drove off after an argument on a date. His attorney said he has battled alcoholism and addiction, and now has intense remorse. 

The tragedy left two families shattered.   

"You have made my life miserable"

The judge called Monday's proceedings a "courtroom full of victims" as one gut-wrenching victim's impact statement after another was given.

"Two children no longer have their mother and father because this defendant was drunk and reckless," Donnelly said. 

The couple's two young daughters, 15 and 9, addressed the court in a tearful plea for justice, asking the judge for the maximum sentence. 

"You have made my life miserable," the 15-year-old said. "You should be ashamed of your actions." 

"Losing my parents has changed my whole entire life," the 9-year-old said. 

Sotirios Spanos apologizes in court

Spanos read a lengthy apology in court. 

"I accept full responsibility. I never intended this epitome of stupidity and irresponsibility. There is no punishment too great," he said. 

"In 32 years of doing criminal defense, I don't think I've found somebody to be more remorseful and accepting responsibility," defense attorney Steven Epstein said. 

That doesn't alter the insurmountable loss. 

Crismairy Rodriguez, Ismenia's sister, showed Spanos the only thing salvageable from the crash. 

"The piece of hair shared in the courtroom is the only thing we have left," she said. 

Judge Howard Sturim called the harm Spanos caused "unimaginable." He sentenced him to 7-21 years.

Spanos requested copies of all the victim's impact statements to reflect on during his imprisonment. 

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