12-Year-Old Boy Struck and Killed in Suspected DUI Accident


We keep readers informed about recent DUI incidents to underscore the consequences of driving under the influence. DUIs are a serious matter and can change the trajectory of your life – for both the victim and the suspect. Here in California, the incidence of DUIs is significantly higher than in other areas of the United States. So we want to do our best to keep you all safely informed.

A repeat DUI offender and convicted bank robber was charged with second-degree murder for a DUI collision in Costa Mesa, California. Unfortunately, the incident tragically killed a 12-year-old boy who was bike riding alongside his father.

DUI Collision in Costa Mesa

This tragedy occurred last week on Sunday, Dec 6th just before 6 p.m. The police identified the victim as Noel Bascon. According to investigative reports, Noel and his father were out riding their bikes near the intersection of Junipero Drive and Arlington Drive. As the two entered the crosswalk, a pickup truck failed to stop at the stop sign and blew through the intersection. When the father saw the car and realized it was not going to stop, he tried to get the driver’s attention but failed. Sadly, the car struck Noel and sent the young boy flying several feet.

When emergency personnel arrived at the scene of the crime, a passerby was attempting CPR on the boy in hopes of reviving him. First responders then continued administering life-saving measures before transporting him to a nearby hospital to receive extensive medical treatment. Unfortunately, the injuries Noel sustained from the crash were far too severe. He was pronounced dead not too long after his arrival.

Authorities suspected that the driver of the pickup truck (later identified as Richard David Lavelle of Long Beach) was impaired while driving. He sustained no injuries from the collision and was arrested at the scene of the crime. His passenger, Lee Anna Diaz Murphy, was also booked on suspicion of possession of controlled substances and unlawful drug paraphernalia.

Learning from Your Past Mistakes

According to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, Lavelle was convicted in 2013 of driving while under the influence in San Diego County. This prior incident upgraded his current charge from manslaughter to murder. He could also potentially face harsher penalties because of his robbery conviction in August 2009 and failure to abide by his parole upon release in 2013.

In response to a news reporter, Noel Bascon’s mother expressed how Lavelle is a menace to society. She believes that he needs to be locked up for life, so he does not do this to anybody else again.

Unfortunately, some people do not learn from past mistakes. Defendants that have so many prior convictions such as Lavelle underscore this sentiment. Given that that the suspect has multiple prior convictions, the DUI lawyer representing him may find it a bit more challenging to navigate this case. It will require an even more delicate approach that respects both the suspect’s intent and the victim’s family’s search for justice. The lawyers at The Law Office of Taylor and Taylor have a hands-on, understanding approach when dealing with cases of all vigor.

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