COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — The woman who waited in a car while her boyfriend viciously beat two women with a bat in Bucktown in 2010 carries photos of the two victims with her in jail, her father said Thursday.
"She walks around with their pictures," said Marcy Cruz's teary-eyed father after a brief court hearing where she was sentenced to 22 years for her role in the attack, which drew international attention because one victim was an exchange student from Northern Ireland.
"She has got a lot of time to think about what she did," said her father, Edwin Cruz.
Exchange student Natasha McShane, 23 at the time, and her friend Stacy Jurich both suffered permanent brain damage as a result of the injuries they suffered at Heriberto Viramontes' hands. McShane, who returned to her native country soon after the attack, cannot walk by herself or speak.
Even though Cruz, 28, didn't swing the wooden bat that forever changed the course of McShane's life, prosecutors charged her with attempted murder for her role in the crime. She pleaded guilty in July.
Cruz made a brief court appearance Thursday when Cook County Judge Jorge Alonso approved the 22-year prison sentence she and prosecutors agreed to in exchange for a guilty plea and her testimony against Viramontes.
Cruz also agreed to tell a judge and jury about what happened on April 23, 2010 — when her then-boyfriend Viramontes attacked McShane and Jurich, prosecutors said.
"We certainly believe that she testified truthfully and credibly," said her attorney, Assistant Public Defender Brian Walsh.
Cruz took the stand against Viramontes last week and told jurors that she and Viramontes were driving around Bucktown. He was looking for someone to rob.
"He tells me: 'Look at all these white hos.' He wanted to rob one of them," said Marcy Cruz, who admitted she waited for Viramontes.
With the time Cruz has already spent behind bars, she will be in prison for another 15 and a half years if she maintains good behavior in prison, according to state statute.
After apologizing for her role in the notorious attack, Cruz blew a kiss to her family and mouthed the words "I love you" to her family.
Her father said he and her mother were heartbroken that Marcy — a mother of two boys ages 4 and 7 — would be separated from her family. However, he acknowledged that his daughter should be held accountable for her decisions.
"Those girls [McShane and Jurich], we wish them the best for their health," said the 50-year-old father, who is now raising the boys. "I don't know if they will ever find it in their hearts to forgive."