DUI Crash in Murrieta Leads To Murder Charge

Driving while under the influence of a drug can result in a DUI just the same as driving under the influence of alcohol. As many probably already know, if you injure or cause the death of another person while driving under the influence, you can face charges including murder. The Press-Enterprise reports on the arrest of a man accused of drugged-driving and causing the death of one person while injuring two others.

51-year-old Christopher Patrick Barbara was arrested for his role in an accident that occurred around 10:40 a.m. on September 8th near Auld Road just east of Murrieta. Barbara was driving his 2002 Chevy Silverado southbound on Winchester Road and drifted into oncoming traffic.

62-year-old Joan Lehmer, who lived in Murrieta was driving her 2011 Toyota Rav4 when the pickup truck crossed into her lane and struck her. Her vehicle overturned and crashed into a 2015 Doge 2500 van.

Lehmer was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the van suffered minor injuries. Barbara and his passenger suffered moderate injuries. Barbara was treated at a local hospital and booked into jail.

Barbara was charged with second-degree murder, gross vehicular manslaughter, driving under the influence of a controlled substance resulting in injury and crossing a divided roadway resulting in injuries.

The defendant is being held in lieu of $1 million dollars in bail. He pled not guilty last Friday.

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