Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Woman charged in fatal crash that killed couple

September 9, 2011 |  6:01 am

Photo: Debris scattered across a Pomona roadway after the fiery fatal collision. Credit: KTLA-TV A 26-year-old woman who was released from Los Angeles County Jail the day before she allegedly plowed her car into another vehicle, killing a man and his pregnant girlfriend, was charged Thursday with three counts of murder.

The charges were filed in connection with the deaths of Miguel Herrera, 22; his pregnant girlfriend, Desiree Grajeda, 17; and a fetus identified in the criminal complaint as “Baby Grajeda.”

Lorraine Martinez also was charged with one count of unlawfully driving or taking a vehicle, the Infiniti G37 involved in the fatal crash, and with taking her ex-boyfriend's car without permission.

If convicted on all counts, Martinez faces a maximum of life with the possibility of parole.

Martinez remains in custody on a probation violation hold and is due back in court Monday. She could be arraigned in connection with the deadly crash Friday morning, Los Angeles County prosecutors said.

Authorities allege that Martinez was driving east at a high rate of speed on Holt Avenue when she collided with the victims’ car as they were pulling into a fast-food restaurant. The impact split their car in two and left the front of the car in flames.

After being arrested by Pomona police July 27, Martinez was charged with misdemeanor possession of methamphetamine and exhibiting a deadly weapon -- a pipe. She pleaded no contest July 29 and was sentenced to 90 days in County Jail before being released from custody on probation on July 31.


FULL COVERAGE: Southern California blackout

Trial set to begin in Irvine 11 student protest case

Fox Sports cancels show that mocked Asians at USC

-- Andrew Blankstein


Photo: Debris is scattered across a Pomona roadway after the fiery fatal collision in July. Credit: KTLA-TV