Drugged Driver Convicted in Fatal Newport Beach Bicycle Accident
Posted on Feb 01, 2011
An Orange County woman has been convicted for causing a fatal Newport Beach bicycle accident and fleeing the scene. She was under the influence of prescription drugs at the time of the crash.
The accident occurred at about 6 a.m. on Dec. 9, 2009. The woman, Patricia Ann Izquieta, 38, of Riverside was driving north in the far right lane of Jamboree Road when her car drifted toward the curb and struck a bicyclist. The bicyclist, 49-year-old Donald Murphy of Irvine, was thrown off his bike and to the curb. He died at the scene from his injuries.
Izquieta continued to drive for more than a mile. Murphy’s bicycle was caught on her bumper and she dragged the bike with her. When she was arrested at a parking lot further down the road, she was found to be under the influence of three separate prescription medications.
This week Izquieta pled guilty to charges of felony hit and run causing death, vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated without gross negligence and charges of misdemeanor driving without a license with an enhancement for causing great bodily injury. She faces up to three years in prison.
As many as one-third of highway accidents involve drivers who are using a medication that may affect their driving ability. Read our library article: “Medicated Drivers on California Highways: Nearly One-third of Accidents Involve Drivers Taking Medication” for more information.