Testimony set to continue in trial of Navy man charged in fatal

Testimony set to continue in trial of Navy man charged in fatal

first_img January 17, 2019 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A fourth day of testimony is expected Thursday in the trial of a Navy petty officer accused of speeding and driving impaired when he crashed his pickup truck into a barrier on a transition ramp to the San Diego- Coronado Bridge and flew off the road into Chicano Park, killing four people.Richard Sepolio, 27, faces 13 charges, including gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, DUI and reckless driving causing injury in connection with the Oct. 15, 2016, deaths of Annamarie Contreras, 50, and Cruz Contreras, 52, a married couple from Chandler, Arizona, and Hacienda Heights residents Andre Banks, 49, and Francine Jiminez, 46.Sepolio faces nearly 24 years in prison if convicted of all charges. In her opening statement, Deputy District Attorney Cally Bright told jurors that Sepolio was traveling more than 80 miles per hour on the transition ramp from northbound Interstate 5 to the bridge about 3:30 p.m. when he lost control of his truck, which plummeted into the park where hundreds of people were enjoying a rally for motorcycle riders.Besides the four people killed, seven others were seriously injured, the prosecutor said.Bright said Sepolio had a glass of alcoholic cider and he and the woman shared a bottle of wine at lunch. The two took an Uber back to her home and Sepolio took off, saying he had to make some calls, the prosecutor said.Bright said Sepolio was on his cellphone arguing with his girlfriend — who’s now his wife — 44 seconds before the first 911 call was made about the accident.One of the first responders smelled alcohol on the defendant’s breath, the prosecutor said.Based on a blood draw done at the hospital, an expert estimated Sepolio’s blood-alcohol level at between .08 and .09 percent at the time of the crash, Bright told the jury.Defense attorney Paul Pfingst told the jury that Sepolio, an aviation electrician who works on helicopters at North Island Naval Air Station, passed two blood tests and two breathalyzer tests administered to him by law enforcement.Pfingst said Sepolio lost consciousness and suffered bruised lungs in the crash but refused pain medication so he could tell officers what happened.The trial is expected to last three weeks. Updated: 9:26 AM Posted: January 17, 2019 Testimony set to continue in trial of Navy man charged in fatal bridge crash FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, Categories: Local San Diego News, Traffic & Accidents last_img

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