BELMONT, N.C. — A Belmont woman faced a judge Monday. The family of the woman she's accused of killing prepared for Monday's visitation.
Police said Belinda Hudspeth was on prescription medication and texting when she ran off the road and hit Lavon Ramsey, 75, on Saturday afternoon.
The victim's husband told Eyewitness News this is a tragedy for both families.
Hudspeth already had two DWI convictions and a conviction for trafficking drugs. She did not serve jail time and was sentenced to probation.
"I just want to apologize to the family," Hudspeth said in court.
Hudspeth's family members cried as the judge set her bond at $1 million for second-degree murder.
"My momma didn't mean to do it. It was an accident," said Hudspeth's daughter Angela Walker.
Chuck Ramsey heard the collision that killed his wife as she walked outside of their home near Belmont.
He said he forgives Hudspeth.
"I feel for her and I know she didn't do this on purpose and things happen," Ramsey said.
Witness Brian Sawyer cannot excuse what he saw.
"I promise you if I get called into court for this, I will make sure I do my best to convict this woman of the maximum sentence she can possibly get," Sawyer said.
He said after the accident he ran over and held the victim's hand as she lay in the street.
"She grabbed my hand and she said, 'Sweetheart, please don't leave. Please don't leave,'" Sawyer said.
He said Hudspeth asked him to stay with the victim so she could go get her boyfriend from work. He said Hudspeth repeatedly tried to leave the scene.
"I told her she wasn't going nowhere. You got to face up to this," Sawyer said.
He said he and other bystanders made sure she didn't leave.
Witness Patricia Shuler said Hudspeth claimed she lost control of the car while reaching for her phone to read a text message.
"A man lost his wife. Children lost their mother. Grandchildren lost a grandmother, all because she had to answer that text," Shuler said.