Crime

Driver accused of running over two cousins released from hospital, charged with 1st Degree Murder

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - The driver blamed for a deadly crash on Valley View Avenue, killing  29-year-old Denise Chavez and 36-year-old Arturo Cordova, has been arrested after a long stay in the hospital.

50-year-old Carlos Garcia, of the 4200 block of Winters Street, was the driver of the GMC Yukon that struck Chavez and Cordova, police said.

Garcia is facing two counts of First Degree Murder. Garcia was arrested Thursday June 22, 2017. He is being held without bond.

Chavez and Cordova were walking along Valley View Avenue during the early-morning hours Sunday, May 7, 2017 when they were struck.

Garcia was hospitalized in critical but stable condition at University Medical Center in El Paso for more than a month.

the group was watching a boxing match on television and the gathering continued into the early morning hours.

At about 3 a.m., Garcia arrived at the home, claiming he was looking for a friend. The group welcomed Garcia and allowed him to stay at the party.

Investigators learned, that after about 45 minutes, Garcia was asked to leave when he acted inappropriately toward Chavez.

While leaving, Garcia allegedly chugged a half bottle of vodka and took a few beers from the home. Police said Chavez, Cordova and another relative followed Garcia, who got into his Yukon and began taunting the partygoers by revving the engine  and driving up and down the roadway.

Police said the partygoers followed Garcia onto Valley View and watched as the Yukon sped east toward North Las Cruces Park and then west past the group.

Garcia made another u-turn on Valley View and allegedly sped east toward the group. Investigators determined the Yukon jumped the curb and struck Chavez and Cordova prior to slamming into a rock wall at the intersection of Valley View and Winters.

Investigators learned from the vehicle's Crash Data Recorder the Yukon was traveling 53 mph a second prior to the crash. The data also indicated that Garcia was not wearing a seatbelt and never applied brakes prior to the crash.

the group was watching a boxing match on television and the gathering continued into the early morning hours.

At about 3 a.m., Garcia arrived at the home, claiming he was looking for a friend. The group welcomed Garcia and allowed him to stay at the party.

Investigators learned, that after about 45 minutes, Garcia was asked to leave when he acted inappropriately toward Chavez.

While leaving, Garcia allegedly chugged a half bottle of vodka and took a few beers from the home. Police said Chavez, Cordova and another relative followed Garcia, who got into his Yukon and began taunting the partygoers by revving the engine  and driving up and down the roadway.

Police said the partygoers followed Garcia onto Valley View and watched as the Yukon sped east toward North Las Cruces Park and then west past the group.

Garcia made another u-turn on Valley View and allegedly sped east toward the group. Investigators determined the Yukon jumped the curb and struck Chavez and Cordova prior to slamming into a rock wall at the intersection of Valley View and Winters.

Investigators learned from the vehicle's Crash Data Recorder the Yukon was traveling 53 mph a second prior to the crash. The data also indicated that Garcia was not wearing a seatbelt and never applied brakes prior to the crash.

Police say a group was watching a boxing match on television and the gathering continued into the early morning hours.

At about 3 a.m., Garcia arrived at the home, claiming he was looking for a friend. The group welcomed Garcia and allowed him to stay at the party.

Investigators learned, that after about 45 minutes, Garcia was asked to leave when he acted inappropriately toward Chavez.

While leaving, Garcia allegedly chugged a half bottle of vodka and took a few beers from the home. Police said Chavez, Cordova and another relative followed Garcia, who got into his Yukon and began taunting the partygoers by revving the engine  and driving up and down the roadway.

Police said the partygoers followed Garcia onto Valley View and watched as the Yukon sped east toward North Las Cruces Park and then west past the group.

Garcia made another u-turn on Valley View and allegedly sped east toward the group. Investigators determined the Yukon jumped the curb and struck Chavez and Cordova prior to slamming into a rock wall at the intersection of Valley View and Winters.

Investigators learned from the vehicle's Crash Data Recorder the Yukon was traveling 53 mph a second prior to the crash. The data also indicated that Garcia was not wearing a seatbelt and never applied brakes prior to the crash.


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