Matthew Cordle claims that he was black out drunk on June 22 when, after a night out on the town with his friends, the 22-year-old got in his truck, and entered the highway going in the wrong direction. In a video confessing to the events that occurred that night, located below, Cordle solemnly states, "My name is Matthew Cordle, and on June 22nd, 2013, I hit and killed Vincent Canzani." The clip ends with Cordle asking for viewers to refrain from drinking and driving.
The video was created for the Because I Said I Would project, whose mission is "bettering humanity through the power of a promise." Cards, like the one shown at the top of this article, are sent out to participants so that they can write out a charitable act or episode of good will.
Cordle was indicted on September 9th, for one count of driving under the influence and for a count of aggravated vehicular homicide, which eventually lead to the death of Vincent Canzani. He turned himself in to the police later that day.
Today, Cordle found himself in a courtroom, and after all the talk of justice and doing the right thing included in his video, plead not guilty to judge Julie Lynch. That same judge speculated that the surprise plea may have sprung from a sneaky effort to have a different judge preside over his case.
Cordle's lawyers have said that he will remain in jail and will not post his bail of $250,000 until he changes his plea to guilty before his new judge, David Fais. Lynch, the first judge, was visibly upset in court today at the "not guilty" plea, and she was vocal about her distaste towards someone who would be dishonest in court. Cordle's attorney's claim that they were attempting to play the court, as Ohio law makes a "guilty" plea lock in a judge to a case. Attorneys were apparently spooked when Lynch claimed that she was unsure of how she would sentence Cordle, who can face up to eight and a half years in prison.
Image courtesy of this youtube video from becauseisaidiwould.