VISTA (CNS) - A motorist accused in a hit-and-run crash in Oceanside that left an 18-year-old bicyclist dead pleaded not guilty Monday to vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and other charges.
Hernan Lopez Gonzalez, 24, was ordered held in lieu of $1 million bail.
A passer-by found David Mendez lying face-down on the asphalt in the 1300 block of Sleeping Indian Lane in Oceanside shortly after 7 a.m. on March 28.
Medics airlifted the Bonsall resident to Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, where he was pronounced dead the next day, Lt. Leonard Mata said.
Based on broken-off auto parts at the scene of the fatality, investigators identified the involved vehicle as a black 1998 Plymouth Neon. An officer found the damaged car in the area later in the day and arrested Gonzalez, who allegedly was driving it at the time of the crash.
The defendant's blood-alcohol level was measured at .09 percent five hours after the fatal crash, said Deputy District Attorney Garret Wong.
In addition to manslaughter, Gonzalez is charged with hit-and-run causing death and two counts of DUI causing injury, the prosecutor said. He faces 10 years in state prison if convicted, Wong said.
Vista Judge Marshall Hockett set a readiness conference for April 12 and a preliminary hearing for April 14.
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