Paralysed girl brings jury to tears

Bernadette Chua, ninemsn
3:30pm November 16, 2012
November 16, 2012: A 9-year-old girl who was paralysed in a crash caused by a drunk driver has made the man cry in court after reading a letter about how the accident had affected her life.

A nine-year-old US girl has brought the drunk driver who left her paralysed to tears by reading out a letter during his trial.

Xitclalli Vasquez was left paralysed from the chest down in 2011 when the driver collided head-on with the car she was riding in in Fort Worth, Texas.

Last week driver Jeremy Solis, 21, was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Xitcalli read out a letter she had written to Solis in court.

The letter explained that she was going to get her nails and hair done with her sister when the accident happened.

"There were times that I would cry and cry. In therapy they showed me how to lift myself and dress myself. But right now it's still very hard. My mom does a lot for me but I try myself," the letter said.

"There are days that I cry cause I can't do what I used to."

Xitclalli turned eight three days after her July 9 accident.

Her dream is to walk again.

"I hope Jeremy would respond to my letter," she said to ABC News.

"It will make me happy if he says he is sorry."

Her letter brought Solis and members of the jury to tears.

Prosecutor Allenna Bangs said Solis had a blood alcohol level of 0.23, nearly three times the legal limit.

He will be eligible for parole in five years.

Xitclalli's mother Arabella Vasquez said despite rehab and therapy, the family said she is a miracle child.

"It's very difficult when your child suddenly has a handicap," she said.

"But no matter how bad it is, we feel blessed to have her with us and fortunate that she made it alive.

"She is a survivor. Many people die because of drunk driving accidents but Xitclalli made it alive and we all have faith she will walk again someday."

Sources: ABC News.
Author: Bernadette Chua, Approving Editor: Nick Pearson.

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