|For Immediate Release
Case # 12CF0581
January 22, 2013
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
DRIVER CONVICTED OF KILLING FRIEND AND INJURING FOUR OTHER PASSENGERS WHILE DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL
SANTA ANA – A man was convicted today of and killing one teenage passenger and injuring four others while driving under the influence of alcohol. Jesus Manzo Torres, 19, Tustin, pleaded guilty to one felony count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence while intoxicated with sentencing enhancements and allegations for causing bodily injury to more than one victim while driving under the influence and personally inflicting great bodily injury on two additional people. As part of the defendant’s plea, the Court indicated Torres would face a sentence of no more than 14 years in state prison at his sentencing Feb. 21, 2013, at 1:30 p.m. in Department C-5, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
At 1:45 a.m. on Nov. 6, 2011, Torres drove his brother’s 1996 Subaru Legacy with five passengers while under the influence of alcohol at a high rate of speed southbound on Santiago Canyon Road. The defendant’s passengers included 19-year-old Alfredo Salas, 18-year-old George Cisneros, 17-year-old Jose. G, 17-year-old Saul L., and 14-year-old Isaias L. While speeding, Torres swerved in the vehicle over the double yellow lines, crossed onto the other side of the street, left the roadway, and slammed into a tree.
Torres caused the crash that resulted in two of the passengers, who were not wearing their seatbelts, being thrown out of the vehicle. The front seat passenger, Cisneros, was transported to Western Medical Center, where he later died. Salas suffered a concussion, multiple broken vertebrae in his back, and a fractured sternum. Jose G. suffered a fractured jaw from multiple blunt traumatic injuries, a concussion, and a third degree burn to his ankle. Isaias L. and Saul L. both suffered cuts and bruises.
Approximately an hour after the crash, Torres displayed objective physical signs of being under the influence of alcohol and had a blood alcohol content of .15 percent.
Related Case # 12CM01812
Daniel Rodriguez, 36, Tustin, pleaded guilty Jan. 8, 2013, to one misdemeanor count of unlawfully purchasing alcohol for a person under the age of 21 and was sentenced to 90 days in Orange County Jail, three years of informal probation, and mandatory participation in a Mothers Against Drunk Driving Victims’ Impact Panel. Rodriguez purchased and furnished Torres with alcohol on the night of the accident.
Deputy District Attorney Anna McIntire of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting this case.