Family Vacation Ruined by Drunk Driver

George Espinosa and his family were hit by a drunk driver while driving from Las Vegas to Yosemite National Park, in California to enjoy a family vacation. While driving through Fresno, California, they were hit by a drunk driver. This family trip was cut tragically short as George’s 10-year-old daughter, Jaime, and his mother Angelita were pronounced dead. Espinosa’s Honda Pilot was struck by Cheyenne Wyllie, a 25-year-old local of Fresno who was driving an SUV. Wyllie had a BAC of 0.22, which is nearly three times the legal limit.

The California Highway Patrol says that Wyllie sped through a stop sign and t-boned the unsuspecting family at an intersection. The culprit has been charged with felony driving under the influence and could face two counts of vehicular manslaughter. Friends and family members of the victim are upset that Wyllie was set free on bail the very next day. While she gets to go home and be with her family, the George Espinosa will never get to see his mother and daughter again. Police and witnesses said that the scene of the accident was particularly horrific. John Gong, a motorist driving through the area, stopped and helped with the accident. Smelling gasoline and fearing that the car was going to explode, he helped pull George Espinosa and his family from the wreckage. Angelita, George’s mother, was already dead by before the ambulance had arrived.

The Espinosa family wants justice.

Cheyenne Wyllie was released on bail Sunday afternoon, barely 24-hours after the fatal accident. One of the reasons that she was able to secure such a quick release is because the police officers charged her with DUI with injury, not vehicular manslaughter. This is something that family and friends of George Espinosa call unacceptable.

Despite the tragedy that occurred, George’s wife Charlotte has managed to stay strong. While staying by her husband’s side as recovers in the intensive care unit, she has been thankful for all of the love and support the Espinosa family has received from friends and strangers alike.

There has even been a GoFundMe account opened to raise money to help the Espinosa family in this difficult time. More than 3,000 people have shared the page, which has raised $30,000 towards the Espinosa family.

While it is suspected that Wyllie will be facing vehicular manslaughter, California does have a law on the books that gives the district attorney the ability to charge her with murder. Known as the “Watson murder”, stemming from the 1981 ruling from the People v. Watson case, a drunk driver who displays recklessness and disregard to human life can be charged with DUI homicide. In the case of Cheyenne Wyllie, who decided to operate a motor-vehicle with a BAC of almost three times the legal limit, the prosecutor wouldn’t have too hard of a time proving that she acted recklessly and with disregard.

Whatever the situation may be, Wyllie will be expected to appear in court for an arraignment in the upcoming days. Whether she pleads guilty or innocent, she will be needing the services of a criminal attorney.