DUI Offender Arrested after Striking and Killing Pedestrian on 101 Freeway

On Monday, Jul 5, 2021, authorities detained 22-year-old Los Angeles resident Adrian Castroramos following a fatal DUI crash that occurred on the 101 Freeway in the Cahuenga Pass. A 45-year-old woman, whose identity remains undisclosed, was struck and killed by Castroramos after she exited her vehicle following a separate crash on the 101.

According to the California Highway Patrol, the initial collision occurred before dawn at approximately 4:40 a.m.. Three cars traveling southbound collided north of Pilgrimage Bridge. After the crash, the woman exited her vehicle to check for damage which remained in the third lane. Unfortunately, minutes later, Castroramos approached the area driving a 2003 Chevrolet Tahoe and struck her.

Emergency personnel responded and upon arrival found the woman suffering with major injuries in the roadway north of the bridge. Sadly, her sustained injuries were extremely severe and she was pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities then arrested Adrian Castroramos on suspicion of DUI.

Officers shut down a part of the southbound 101 freeway through the Cahuenga Pass for more than two hours following the crash. There are no further details regarding the fatal DUI incident, the investigation is ongoing.

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Evidence That Can be Used Against You in a DUI Case

Driving while drunk is a criminal offense in every state. Although each state differs slightly when defining what drunk driving and its consequences are, there are many overlapping qualities. This is especially true when it comes to the kind of evidence police can gather and what of that evidence can be used by a prosecutor during trial. The prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were either over the legal limit of intoxication, were impaired by those intoxications, or both based on the evidence presented at trial.

Types of Evidence Considered in DUI Cases

People charged with a DUI are entitled to a trial by a judge or jury. Evidence that may used at trial may include physical evidence such as an open or empty container of alcohol found in defendant’s vehicle, the arresting officer’s observations regarding the defendant’s objective symptoms of intoxication (slurred speech, bloodshot eyes, etc.), and/or the defendant’s performance on the field sobriety tests as well as chemical tests– whether breath, urine, or blood tests.

When it comes to the legal level of intoxication, most people think of the general .08 blood alcohol content (BAC) percentage in California. However, those under 21 or someone on probation for a DUI cannot drive with even .01 blood alcohol content. There is also the enhanced penalties if your BAC level is .15 or greater.

Possible Evidentiary Issues that Can Surface During a DUI Trial

There must be reasonable suspicion for why the officer pulls you over, which they will then document in a police report. When administering field sobriety tests or chemical tests, the officer must adhere to certain procedures. If there is no reasonable suspicion for the vehicle stop, probable cause for the arrest, and/or the officer did not follow proper procedures when gathering evidence, your attorney can make a motion to exclude illegally obtained evidence at trial.

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Two Young Sisters Killed in Fatal DUI Crash

Last week, an 11-year old girl and her 8-year-old little sister were struck and killed in Porterville California. According to investigative results, the alleged drunk driver also critically injured two other children during the event of the crime. This tragedy happened Saturday, June 19, 2021, at approximately 3:18 p.m.

Authorities stated that the suspect, 43-year-old Elizabeth Nugaray, was traveling southbound on Main Street when she failed to stop at a traffic light at Orange Avenue. Consequently, Nugaray first broadsided a Dodge Journey that had the right of way and collided with an SUV as well as a traffic control light pole. The SUV had five occupants, four of whom were minors.

The damages to the SUV were so severe that several victims had to be extracted from the vehicle by emergency personnel. Sadly, the 11-year-old girl succumbed to her injuries at the scene of the crime and her younger 8-year-old sister passed away from her injuries at a nearby hospital. A 4-year-old boy and a 13-year-old girl also suffered major injuries and were transported via helicopter to a local hospital for treatment. They were listed in critical condition.

Nugaray was arrested and is currently booked in the Tulare County Jail on charges of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and causing an injury traffic collision while impaired. Her bail is set at $100,000.

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Repeat DUI Offender Faces Murder Following Fatal DUI Pedestrian Accident

On May 20th at approximately 10:09 p.m. in Orange, California, a 19-year-old pedestrian was struck and killed by Sitani Pinomi. The victim, Aden Uriostegui, was walking home from work when a 2002 Ford F-250 pickup truck traveling southbound ran through a red traffic light and fatally struck him. The crash occurred at the intersection of Tustin Street and Heim Avenue.

According to investigative reports, Pinomi pulled over following the collision to try and wake up the teen who at the time was unresponsive. By the time emergency personnel arrived, Uriostegui sadly succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. Consequently, Orange police officers conducted a field sobriety test on the driver and shortly thereafter arrested him for a DUI and driving on a suspended license.

Sadly, this was not Pinomi’s first DUI offense. He was previously arrested on January 24th, 2020 in Salt Lake City and was cited for using or having drug paraphernalia, interfering with an arresting officer, and failing to comply with police commands.

Due to his criminal history, Orange Police booked him at the Orange County Jail for muder and remained in custody until his court date, June 9th, 2021.

A GoFund Me Page has since been set up to help the victim’s family with funeral expenses.

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DUI and the Booking and Bail Process in California

DUI arrests can be challenged successfully with the right representation. If you or a loved one is facing a DUI arrest, you should know the rights you have and what to expect from the law. If there is probable cause to believe a driver is impaired, police officers can legally take them into custody after an arrest is made. Once in custody, the officer will confiscate the driver’s license and subject them to a breath, blood, or urine test to verify their intoxication level. However, prior to conducting any of the aforementioned tests, the police will inform you of your chemical tests rights which includes the consequences of refusing to consent to a test. The penalties of refusing to submit to a chemical test in California after being lawfully arrested are:

· increased penalties in addition to the standard California DUI penalties

· a mandatory driver’s license suspension that will occur regardless of the outcome in your DUI case

If the police fails to inform you of your rights, you may be able to challenge any penalties that result from a refusal.

What Happens Once You are Booked

After an arrest has been made, police officers book the suspect. This process generally involves:

· documentation of the suspect’s personal information

· a description of the committed crime, criminal background search

· a full body search, fingerprinting, and a mugshot

· confiscation of all personal belongings

· and placement of suspect in holding cell or jail

Bail Process

If a DUI suspect is placed in jail, they will usually be able to obtain pre-arraignment release through bail–an agreement to pay money in order to obtain release from custody. As part of the release agreement, the suspect agrees to appear back in court for all scheduled court appearances including pre-trial motion, preliminary hearings, arraignment, and if necessary, trial.

A DUI suspect is typically released several hours after being processed, however in the event that the DUI suspect is not allowed to post bail immediately, it is possible for a judge to later decide to allow release on bail at a separate hearing or the arraignment.

What Determines the Bail Amount?

Each crime has a specific bail amount attached to it. The amount of bail is determined by a schedule that is set by local law. Bail for DUI in California can range from $5,000 minimum to $25,000. With DUI, the exact money you may have to pay will depend on whether or not it is your first DUI offense amongst other factors such as:

· seriousness of your DUI offense in terms of possible injuries

· your age

· the threat you would pose to the community upon release

· the risk that you will commit another crime if released

Bail Bonds and Bail Agencies

If you are unable to afford bail a bondsman or bail bond is a commonly used alternative. A bail bond is a short-term loan to cover bail. Many local bail bond services are open 24 hours a day and can often get your bond approved in a timely manner. The only caveat is that you must typically pay interest of 10% on the loan. If you are unable to pay that percentage, you can request that the judge lower it. In order to go this route, you must first request a bail hearing. It is imperative that you have a good DUI lawyer representing you to increase your chances of bail reduction.

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