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Santa Maria Man Pleads Guilty to DUI in Fatal Crash

Sergio Chagolla-Chagolla Click to view larger
Sergio Chagolla-Chagolla

A man accused of driving while drunk and causing a crash that killed a Santa Maria woman on Memorial Day weekend has pleaded guilty and will be sentenced to five years in state prison.

Sergio Chagolla-Chagolla, 29, changed his plea in court Wednesday. 

Chagolla was arrested by Santa Maria police after an early-morning crash on May 28 crash involving two vehicles at the intersection of Railroad Avenue and Donovan Road. 

Five people were transported to Marian Regional Medical Center, where Lyvelyn Ordas Reyes, 57, of Santa Maria, died due to injuries she received in the collision.

In one of Santa Barbara County Superior Court Judge Gustavo Lavayen’s last cases on a busy Wednesday, Chagolla pleaded guilty to one felony count of driving with a blood-alcohol content above the legal limit of .08.

Chagolla, who was represented by Deputy Public Defender Melody Stewart, also admitted special allegations for causing great bodily injury and driving with a blood-alcohol level above .15.

The felony charge will count as one strike under California’s Three Strikes Sentencing Law, Deputy District Attorney Madison Whitmore noted.

Other charges will be dismissed, including felony driving under the influence causing injury and misdemeanor driving on a suspended or revoked license.

The judge ordered Chagolla to return Nov. 22 for sentencing. The defendant is expected to serve 85 percent of the sentenced time in prison, which would be more than four years of the five-year sentence.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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