A man was convicted Friday in a drunken driving crash that claimed the lives of a mother and her two young daughters who were crossing a street in Placentia, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office announced.
Nicholas Stephen Muñoz, 28, of Placentia, pleaded guilty to three counts of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence while intoxicated, with sentencing enhancements for causing great bodily injury, according to a news release.
On Aug. 20, 2016, Muñoz drove down West La Jolla Street under the influence of alcohol, at an unsafe speed while not paying attention, prosecutors said. He struck Patricia Santiago Venture, 35, of Placentia, and her daughters Stephanie Ledezma, 7, and Diana Ledezma, 3, who were walking home after attending a friend’s birthday party, Placentia police said.
Two officers were in the area when they heard the sound of the crash, the news release read. They responded and found the three victims unresponsive in the street. Paramedics were unable to revive the mother and her daughters.
After the deadly crash, witnesses told KTLA that Muñoz tried to leave the scene but was detained by people who had been attending the party. He was subsequently arrested.
Muñoz is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 5. He faces a maximum sentence of 15 years and eight months in state prison, according to the DA’s office.