Woman allegedly partied for hours before deadly DUI crash

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VISTA, Calif. -- Witnesses claim a suspected drunk driver partied at a club and hotel before getting behind the wheel and killing a pedestrian on June 27 in Oceanside.

Esteysi Sanchez wiped away tears while listening to testimony during a preliminary hearing Monday.

According to authorities, on the morning of the crash, Sanchez was driving drunk along Mission Avenue when she went off the road and plowed into 69-year-old Jack Tenhulzen, then drove for nearly a mile with the victim wedged in her windshield before abandoning the car a few blocks from her home.

Sanchez's live-in boyfriend called police and reported the deadly crash.

Officer Brad Hunter said he talked with Sanchez’s 13-year-old son who heard a knock on the door that morning.

“He went to the front door and opened the door and found his mother standing in the doorway. He described that she was crying and stated that she smelled as if she had been drinking," said Hunter.

Authorities say Sanchez did not have a license and when her blood alcohol level was tested – it was twice the legal limit.

In court, 30-year-old Sanchez listened to a friend who testified that hours before the crash she ran into a group of people at a club and was dancing and drinking -- and later, met the group at a hotel.

“We had drinks in the hotel room," the witness said.

Brenda Sparks, an Oceanside resident, said she wanted to be at the hearing to support the victim, who was homeless.

“She came to the country illegally. She continued to drive illegally. She drove drunk – she knew she was drunk. I’m going to be here fighting for Jack – because nobody else will," said Sparks.

Prosecutors are seeking a murder charge against Sanchez who is being held on $1.5 million bail.

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