Wed. Jun 12th, 2024

Gerardo Joaquin Garcia Lopez, a 25-year-old Santa Ana man, was charged this Wednesday with driving drunk and causing a crash that killed 67-year-old Rezvan Hekmat of Laguna Hills, in Tustin.

Garcia Lopez was charged with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury and driving under the influence with a blood-alcohol 0.08% or more causing injury. He is also facing sentencing enhancements of inflicting great bodily injury on two victims.

Lopez is also accused of killing and injuring his passenger, Miguel Xum.

The crash happened on June 4 at about 5 p.m. at Barranca Parkway and Tustin Ranch Road.

Tustin police officers responded to the scene and found that Lopez had Xum and another woman in his vehicle. The other woman was not injured in the collision.

Lopez allegedly ran a red light while going west on Barranca and slammed into the vehicle Hekmat was driving. This caused both vehicles to bounce off other vehicles in the intersection, according to the Tustin Police Dept.

Hekmat was taken to a hospital and was later pronounced dead. She appears to have been a retired educator.

Lopez was hospitalized as well following the crash and was then arrested upon his release.

Lopez is alleged to have had a blood-alcohol level of 0.41, more than five times the legal limit, and was driving faster than 65 mph. Remember this happened at 5 p.m. which means he would have been drinking before dinnertime, not afterwards.

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

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