Shelby: For most of us, admitting our mistakes on camera is a pretty scary thought. But one guy in Ohio posted his video confession online for millions of people to see. Maggie Rulli tells us why.
Maggie: The video begins with a story.
Matthew Cordle: I was out with some friends. We were all drinking really heavily.
Maggie: A man whose voice and image have been digitally altered, talks about driving drunk. A crime he committed months ago. But instead of trying to fight the charges against him, the man says he wants to take responsibility for his actions and then reveals himself.
Matthew: My name is Matthew Cordle, and on June 22nd, 2013, I hit and killed Vincent Canzani. This video will act as my confession.
Maggie: Mathew Cordle posted this video where he admits to driving the wrong way down a highway while drunk and crashing head-on into Vincent Canzani’s car. Police say Cordle was found injured at the scene and had a blood alcohol level that was twice the legal limit.
Yesterday, Cordle made good on his online confession…
Matthew: Yes, Your Honor.
Maggie: …Pleading guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide and driving under the influence – crimes that could cost the 22-year-old Cordle up to eight years in prison.
Young people have the highest rate of driving while under the influence. More than 20% of teenagers and nearly 25% of people in their early twenties admit to driving drunk within the past year. And while the penalties for driving under the influence vary from state to state, every states can punish even first time offenders with jail time. And that is on top the already tough punishments for underage drinking.
Cordle’s story and his unusual online confession have gone viral…
Ron O’Brien: It was a compelling piece of video.
Maggie: …And even caught the case’s prosecutor by surprise.
O’Brien: Boy, I’ve never seen one like this before, I would tell you that.
Maggie: Steve Crain was a friend of Vincent Canzani.
Steve Crain: This is the right thing to do. And I think that’s the way Vince would look at it. In fact, I think Vince would be proud of that young man.
Maggie: But Vincent Canzani’s daughter calls the video ‘self-serving,’ saying quote, ‘My family has not been helped at all by this video. Nothing has changed for the better and, if anything, it has only caused us heartache.
Maggie: To get his controversial message out, Cordle chose the website because I said I would, created by Alex Sheen.
Alex Sheen: I actually helped Matthew Cordle film this confession video. He was looking for a way to reach people with the message of not drinking and driving, and not making the same excuses that he made in his life.
Maggie: Excuses that will now haunt him for the rest of his life.
Matthew: I’m willing to take that sentence for just one reason. And that reason is so I can pass this message on to you. I’m begging you, please don’t drink and drive.
Maggie: Maggie Rulli, Channel One News.