Nothing will ease the pain of losing 8-year-old Cadence Gordon, but her family said they are glad the trial against Wenthold ended in a conviction.
“We were relieved, glad that it's over,” said Cadence's Grandfather Jim Hughes. “It's been 18 months and it was time for closure,” he added. Hughes said he will never forget the call he got that day in September of 2013.
Cadence, her mom and aunt were in an SUV on Highway 9 in Norman and swerved to avoid a head-on crash with Wenthold, who had crossed into oncoming traffic. Their SUV crashed into another vehicle as a result, killing Cadence.
“She was a remarkable child, I don't think she met a stranger and she loved to dance and sing,” Hughes told News 9.
Court records stated, Wenthold admitted she had taken Xanax before getting behind the wheel. During testimony, it was also revealed she had passed out behind the wheel two months prior to this deadly crash.
Wenthold took the stand in her own defense, but it was not enough for the jury.
Hughes said her actions affected so many lives, including her own family.
“I watched them through the trial and they suffered just as much, and that's a shame, too,” Hughes explained.
He said he hopes someone learns from their painful loss.
“The lesson is that prescription drugs are as addictive as illegal drugs, if not more so,” Hughes said. “And people should not drive when they take these drugs. Don't do it, the cost is just horrendous,” he added.
Wenthold will be sentenced on March 25th.
Cadence's mom and aunt were injured in the crash and the mom has filed a civil lawsuit against Wenthold.