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Father of El Paso teacher hopes ‘eternity in hell’ awaits her killer after he’s sentenced to 10 years in prison

KVIA file
Amanda Weyant (left), Joel Velazquez (center bottom), and the scene where she was struck and killed (right).
Joel Velazquez-Herrera
KVIA file
Joel Velazquez-Herrera is seen in his arrest mugshot.

EL PASO, Texas -- A man accused of striking an El Paso elementary school teacher with his car and killing her pleaded guilty in a deal with prosecutors on Thursday and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

24-year-old Joel Velazquez, wearing a jail jumpsuit, appeared in court and entered guilty pleas to manslaughter, accident involving death and tampering or fabricating evidence.

Velazquez admitted to killing Amanda Weyant last Thanksgiving. Prosecutors said his car ran two red lights before he fatally struck her.

The plea agreement called for Velazquez to receive 10-years on each count to be served concurrently, or at the same time.

He offered an apology to Weyant’s family in court, saying he was sorry and knows his actions were wrong.  Velazquez said he wished he could take back that day, but he knows he can’t.

He said he also knew the victim’s family might not want to hear what he had to say, which was evident from their victim impact statements to the judge.

Weyant’s father, Danny Ferguson, said the image of seeing his daughter’s body imprint on the hood and windshield of the car is burned in his memory.

“I know you purposefully didn’t set out to kill my daughter that night, but your actions and decisions are unforgivable,” the grieving father said, adding that he hoped there was an “eternity in hell” awaiting Velazquez.

Jim Parker

Jim Parker is the Director of Digital Content for ABC-7.

Julio-Cesar Chavez

Julio-Cesar Chavez is an ABC-7 reporter.



  1. I have to agree with the father on this one. I also believe the good Lord will deal with Velazquez at the proper time and in an appropriate manner. Rot in hell dude.

  2. Ten years from now when this fool gets out of prison he will still have a life, Amanda Weyant did not get that chance. The judge should have rejected the plea deal. Unfair for the victim and her family. Does not show justice for anyone hurt by this murderer.

  3. Maybe they did a toxicology test and was toasted to the gils. That can’t be a possibility after exiting the Cincinnati district right? The above morons defending color.

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