Woman Texting, High When She Struck, Killed Pedestrian, Police Say

Josephine Sardina had just smoked marijuana and was texting when her Cadillac Escalade hit David Budge on Oct. 15, according to the criminal complaint.

A 31-year-old Greendale woman faces 25 years in prison after striking and killing David Budge of South Milwaukee while Budge was walking on Loomis Road in October, police say.

Josephine Sardina had just smoked marijuana and was texting when her Cadillac Escalade hit Budge on Oct. 15, according to the criminal complaint.

Sardina was charged with homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle in Milwaukee County Circuit Court on Friday.

Sardina told Greenfield police, according to the complaint, she was traveling northeast on West Loomis road and that she saw Budge walking on the same side of the road but in the opposite direction.

She felt a thud and thought she may have hit a parked car, she told police. She looked back and saw Budge on the ground, stopped the car and ran to check on him but he did not have a pulse.

A witness told police it appeared Budge was trying to get out of the way of the oncoming Escalade before it struck him. The police investigation determined Budge was in a parking lane that was not to be driven on and that Sardina would have had to veer into that lane in order to strike Budge.

Sardina told police she was not on the phone and only used it to call 911, but a search warrant of her phone records revealed Sardina sent a text message and received and read another during the time of the accident.

Sardina’s blood was tested and revealed it contained a level of THC, the controlled substance in marijuana.

Sardina also faces fines of up to $100,000. She has a preliminary hearing Jan. 24.

KHD January 12, 2013 at 06:53 PM
Well, certainly a tragedy, but as I stated back in october, HOW CAN YOU NOT SEE A PERSON ??? I just knew something was distracting this woman. When are we going to make laws that prohibit talking and texting on phones against the law? You watch, she will not get much of a sentence. I think 20 years would send a message loud and clear. She also must have been in a hurry to try and pass a car in the parking lane.
Really? January 12, 2013 at 08:10 PM
We already have laws dealing with these issues. We also have laws dealing with using controlled substances and driving. When will people start taking responsibility for doing the correct thing? Common sense and personal responsibilty go a long way and neither of those occured in this case.
JustMe January 12, 2013 at 08:27 PM
We already have the laws but people just don't follow them.
KHD January 12, 2013 at 09:47 PM
We dont have any laws against talking on a hand held cell phone.
Str8shooter January 13, 2013 at 01:59 AM
KHD- I don't disagree with everything you said but the driver said she DID see the pedestrian. I don't understand why you're saying the driver was in a hurry and passing in the parking lane??? Technically it is now illegal for new drivers with probationary licenses to drive and talk on the cellphone and it is also already illegal to talk on the phone contributing to an accident. It's called inattentive driving. The problem you have with making simply talking on the phone being illegal is you then SHOULD also make eating, adjusting a radio station/volume, putting on sunglasses, looking at kids in rear seat, manipulating vehicle controls such as windshield wipers, etc. all illegal. All of those things by themself are legal but when they contribute to dangerous driving they are inattentive driving which is already illegal.
KHD January 13, 2013 at 12:56 PM
The police investigation determined Budge was in a parking lane that was not to be driven on and that Sardina would have had to veer into that lane in order to strike Budge. The studies that have come out now say that talking on a cell phone while driving is more of a problem than DUI. Police should be able to stop a driver if seen talking on a cell phone.
Str8shooter January 13, 2013 at 01:27 PM
Correct she did deviate from her lane into the other lane but I didn't understand why you said she was in a hurry and passing a car in the parking lane because that wasn't learned from the investigation. I'm assuming the drugs in her system, the texting, and the cellphone use is what caused that.
Matian January 13, 2013 at 06:11 PM
KHD - what other rights do you think a police officer should take away from us? Talking to other passengers in the car, listening to the radio, driving itself? The government is already WAY too involved in our lives as it is!! She needs to take responsibility for her actions and should never have driven under the influence! You must be a Democrat with that attitude! What happened was a tragedy and it happened to my friends' relative. But the police randomly stopping us for something that is not against the law in all places is not the answer. The government is already WAY too involved in out lives which was never the intention of our fore fathers!!
Chrystyl January 13, 2013 at 07:11 PM
Yes, the laws are in place BUT the law of personal responsibility prevails here. She made a conscious decision to drive impaired (high) and texting while driving. Personally, I drive for a living and there is no text message from anyone that would distract me from my driving. The risk is too great and I'm not about to take that chance. My vehicle sits above many passenger cars or are even with SUVs and I see this constantly. Texting, while looking down with the phone in their laps so they can't be seen (so they think). What chance did this man have, just walking somewhere? She KILLED him!!!!!
Really? January 13, 2013 at 07:44 PM
Very well said Chrystyl!
KHD January 13, 2013 at 07:50 PM
Martian, For one I'm not a democrat. I do alot of driving and was hit by a woman talking on her cell, she didn't look and moved into my lane and hit me. There are far to many people that think it is ok to talk on the phone while driving, go look at the studies of how much of a distraction it is. There is no valid excuse for talking on a cell and driving. And what does this have to do with our Fore Fathers?? It is about driving anywhere from a 2 to 7 ton car and not paying attention to the task at hand.
KHD January 13, 2013 at 07:52 PM
Agreed 100% Chrystyl.
Strontium90 January 14, 2013 at 01:55 AM
I hope she goes to prison for this
A concerned parent January 14, 2013 at 02:00 AM
Putting the words "woman texting" first makes it seem that the entire reason that this accident happened was only texting, but that is simply not the case. The woman made multiple stupid decisions which took this man's life. So first she was high on marijuana before she decided to drive a car, which is not a fact to just glaze over. In other words she was intoxicated and decided to drive a vehicle. She was so intoxicated that she even thought she saw this man she had no idea where he really was located. And knowing there was a person near her, knowing she was high, knowing she was driving then decided to text. Sounds like some dumb decision that cumulatively put together killed this poor man. Good news is she stopped to see what she hits when she could have simply kept going.
A concerned parent January 14, 2013 at 02:57 AM
The laws on the books are fine and carry stiff fines. It's up to the judges to carry them out.
Really? January 14, 2013 at 03:32 AM
Matian I agree with some of what you say but talking on a phone while driving is not a protected right that people have. There are also many differences in laws between all states, such as speed limits, that need to be enforced differently. As for our founding statesmen, I would argue that it was indeed their intent to create a system where the governement establishes a set of rules/guidelines to keep the country safe. As society evolves, so do the laws protecting all of the people. That however is for a different thread as the focus here should be on a horrific act by a person who showed no personal responsibility. As I said earlier in the thread - personal responsibility and common sense go a long way. Until people start doing what is right and acting in a responsible way, these things will continue to happen. Unfortunately no law will stop people like this driver from acting in an irresponsible manner!
concerned January 16, 2013 at 09:52 PM
Drugs and drinking are the problem, people that use them make poor decisions, react slower and stupider and their first wrong decision is getting high and to me that is the real problem.
Anonymous February 17, 2013 at 03:14 AM
A woman named Stephanie Andresen of Oak Creek, WI hit and killed my father. He was walking home a little bit after 5pm in January of 2010. Ms. Andresen had THC and opiates in her system when she hit him. In the report, it stated that she looked up (from what, I still do not know) and noticed my father. He died at the scene. Ms. Andresen got away with killing him -- she did not even receive a citation! My father was 77 years old & not a fast walker. She hit him while he was trying to cross the street. Since justice was not served in my father's case, I hope it is for the late David Budge. God bless his family & friends. Such tragedies often leave devastating effects on the victim's loved ones.


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