By Jorge Calvillo ( | First Posted: May 08, 2014 11:19 AM EDT

(Photo: Facebook)

On Monday, May 5, a Fort Lauderdale federal court in northern Miami sentenced a man accused of drunk driving and fatally running over a Miami Heat cheerleader in 2010 to 15 years in prison.

46-year-old Mario Careaga was found guilty of manslaughter and driving under the influence of alcohol when he ran over the motorcycle in which 22-year-old Nancy López Ruiz was traveling, a young Hispanic woman who was soon to begin her first season as a Miami Heat cheerleader, according to network 6 South Florida.

A later exam detected that alcohol levels in Careaga's blood was over the legal limit allowed in Florida, and he later admitted that he had imbibed various glasses of vodka before taking the wheel of his vehicle.

Careaga, who was described by over a dozen witnesses as a "selfless" and "completely honest" person during his trial, was sentenced on Monday, May 5 by Broward Circuit Judge Ilona Holmes to spend 15 years in prison, according to The Sun Sentinel.

The same source highlights, however, that Careaga might be out of jail, awaiting an appeal, once he pays a $100,000 bail.

On their part, the family of the victim said that their future was suddenly halted when López Ruiz died in the western section of the Sunrise Boulevard highway, close to Fort Lauderdale.

Armando Ruiz, father of the young woman said that "Nancy was a very sweet girl. Since she was little we realized how much she enjoyed dancing. We did everything we could to let her chase that dream," said the man, according to The Sun Sentinel.

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