Date: August 11, 2017
DRUNKEN DRIVER SENTENCED TO 22 YEARS IN PRISON FOR MANSLAUGHTER FOLLOWING HIT-AND-RUN CRASH THAT RESULTED IN WOMAN’S DEATH
SANTA ANA, Calif. – A drunken driver was sentenced today to 22 years in state prison for manslaughter following a hit-and-run crash that resulted in a woman’s death.
Dallas Frank Reichstein, 48, Santa Ana
Pleaded guilty on June 16, 2017, to the following felony counts:
- Gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated
- Hit and run resulting in death
- Second strike prior conviction for residential burglary in 2014
22 years in state prison
Circumstances of the Case
- At approximately 10:10 p.m. on Jan. 28, 2015, the defendant drove a Nissan Xterra Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) while under the influence of alcohol, westbound on West MacArthur Boulevard in Santa Ana. The defendant was driving 54 mph in a 40 mph zone.
- At the same time, 59-year-old Pearleen Hopkins was crossing the street on West MacArthur Boulevard outside of the designated crosswalks.
- The defendant slammed into Hopkins with his SUV and failed to stop and render assistance.
- The victim died at the scene as a result of the injuries she sustained from the impact of the vehicle.
- Witnesses contacted the Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD), who located the defendant in his vehicle in a nearby residential neighborhood.
- Reichstein had a blood alcohol content of .19 percent and was arrested by SAPD officers.
At the sentencing today, Pearleen’s sisters’ victim impact statements were read to the court. Her sister Ella P. wrote in part, “… if only Mr. Dallas Frank Reichstein III had not gone behind the wheel that day under the influence of alcohol, my sister would still be alive!” She continued, “She took care of my mother who is half blind . At times it becomes so unbearable knowing she’s gone. No mother wants to bury their child!”
The victim’s sister Rebecca C. also wrote in part, “Pearl was the Heart and Joy of our family. Pearl had a daughter, 3 grandchildren, and 2 greatgrandchildren. She nor they will ever have family fun time again. Her grandchildren and greatgrandchildren will only know her by videos, and pictures.” Rebecca C. continued, “You made a choice that night. A choice to not drive since you were drunk or a choice to drink and drive. YOU MADE THE WRONG CHOICE.”
Senior Deputy District Attorney Daniel Feldman of the Homicide Unit prosecuted this case.