REDWOOD CITY -- The Sunnyvale man charged with a drunken driving crash that killed a mother and her two sons sobbed in court Thursday as his friends and the family of the dead looked on quietly.

Denis Pereria Demacedo, 28, didn't enter a plea in San Mateo County Superior Court to the three counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated for the crash Saturday in Daly City. Commissioner Elizabeth Hill ordered him back Tuesday.

The hearing came as a memorial fund was set up to help cover funeral and medical costs stemming from the collision that killed mother Josefa Osorio Acevedo, 50; and her sons Amado Osorio Acevedo, 23; and Josue Osorio, 15.

Since the crash, Demacedo's plunged deep into regret, said several of his Brazilian friends, who described him as having the heart of a child.

"He is just crying all the time because he is feeling so badly for what happened," said friend Flavio Rogerio, 35, of Daly City. "I know what happened is terrible, but all he keeps saying is 'please God, forgive me.'"

But forgiveness from the Osorio family may not come swiftly. They are mourning the sudden and shocking deaths of the mother who came from El Salvador about seven years ago with her two sons, her only children.

The family of three and the older son's 20-year-old girlfriend were on their way to eat together when Demacedo's BMW slammed broadside into the family's Toyota, which was making a U-turn, authorities said. The girlfriend remains hospitalized in critical condition.


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"We'll forgive, but not forget." said Paul Osorio, 28, cousin and nephew of the victims after court. "We want to emphasize how important it is to not drink and drive. You can take someone's life in a second."

Prosecutors say Demacedo was driving 60 mph on a residential street and had just sped away from a minor fender bender at a stop sign on Eastmoor when he slammed into the family. He'd allegedly been drinking for up to five hours at a nearby pizzeria with friends before getting behind the wheel.

His blood alcohol concentration was 0.18, -- or more than double the legal limit two hours after the crash, prosecutors say. At the time, he was on probation for a 2010 misdemeanor drunken driving arrest in Sunnyvale.

Paul Osorio said his cousin, Amado, worked as a truck driver for Safeway.com and was a graduate of Westmoor High School, where he'd met his girlfriend of five years. The younger brother, Josue, was a freshman at Westmoor and was an honor roll student there, said Osorio.

"This guy has a record behind him," said Jaime Osorio, 54, of Daly City, Josefa's brother. "He's just going to go do it again, and that's going to be more sorrow and pain to another family."

If convicted of all three vehicular manslaughter charges, Demacedo faces a maximum of 15 years, eight months behind bars, according to prosecutors. He's being held without bail at the San Mateo County Jail.

Donations to the Osorio memorial fund can be made at www.osoriomemorial.com, www.osoriomemorialfund.com or at any Bank of the West branch. A prayer service for the family is set for Friday at 3 p.m. on the 100 block of Eastmoor Avenue.

Contact Joshua Melvin at 650-348-4335. Follow him at Twitter.com/melvinreport.