PAW PAW — The Benton Harbor man accused of killing two people in a crash on Red Arrow Highway in January will serve at least 23 years in prison.

Jose Humberto Canedo was sentenced in Van Buren County Circuit Court on Monday to 23-35 years in prison on one count of second-degree homicide of Mary Fender, and a concurrent term of 6 years and 8 months to 10 years in prison on one count of operating with a high blood alcohol content causing serious injury with prior conviction, according to online court records.

Canedo pleaded no contest to the charges in October. Eight other charges were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

Canedo, 23 at the time, was driving in the 60000 block of Red Arrow Highway in Hartford Township on Jan. 12 when he crossed the center line and hit a Jeep head-on that was traveling westbound.

Riding in the vehicle with Canedo were Skylinn, 6, and a 1-year-old boy. Fender, 73, was the driver of the Jeep. Her 56-year-old passenger survived. Fender died at the scene, while Skylinn died later at the hospital. The other passengers were taken to hospitals in critical condition.

Canedo had originally been arrested in mid-January on a warrant for failure to appear for a show cause hearing on a charge of operating while intoxicated while police and prosecutors investigated the crash.

He was charged with the nine other counts in February.

During his sentencing Monday, Canedo was given credit for 283 days already served in the Van Buren County Jail.

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