Judge orders road rage suspect to stand trial - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Judge orders road rage suspect to stand trial

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CHULA VISTA (CNS) - A woman accused of running down a motorcyclist with her car during a fit of road rage on a South Bay freeway was ordered Monday to stand trial on a second-degree murder charge.
Darla Renee Jackson, 25, is accused in the May 28 death of Zachary Buob, a U.S. Navy chief petty officer in special operations.
Following a two-day preliminary hearing, South Bay Judge Ana Espana ruled that Jackson drove "dangerously and recklessly" and committed an act which caused the death of the 39-year-old victim.
"Clearly Ms. Jackson was targeting Mr. Buob," the judge said. "She pursued him."
Deputy District Attorney Laura Evans told the judge that Jackson passed Buob in the fast lane, swerved her car toward him several times -- causing him to flinch -- chased him across four lanes of traffic, then ran him down on 
state Route 54.
Jackson was five feet behind Buob and going 80 mph when traffic slowed and she hit the victim, the prosecutor said.
"It is a tragedy, and one the defendant is responsible for," Evans told the judge.
But defense attorney Stephen Cline said there was no intent to kill on Jackson's part and told the judge that the entire road rage incident occurred in a "minute or two."
Cline said the crime amounted to "gross vehicular manslaughter or less."
In binding the defendant over for trial, Espana noted that Jackson had used her car before to threaten her ex-boyfriend after they broke up in 2009.
California Highway Patrol Officer Brad Clinkscales testified that Jackson told him Buob passed her on northbound Interstate 5 near E Street in Chula Vista about 5:20 p.m., then slowed in front of her.
Jackson said Buob got on her right side, kicked her car, flipped her off, then sped across all lanes toward eastbound state Route 54, according to Clinkscales.
The defendant told the officer that she gave chase because she wanted to exchange (insurance) information with Buob and "wasn't going to let him do that," Clinkscales testified.
Jackson said Buob accelerated to about 95 mph as he transitioned onto state Route 54 and she tried to keep up, Clinkscales said.
The defendant told the officer that traffic slowed and Buob tried to drive between two cars. Jackson said she tried to stop but couldn't avoiding hitting the back of his motorcycle and running him over, Clinkscales testified.
William Touch testified that his passenger pulled out her cell phone and started recording the incident as Jackson's Nissan Altima and Buob's motorcyclist headed onto eastbound state Route 54. The witness said the Altima and the motorcycle were "inches apart" as they transitioned onto the eastbound highway.
Near Sweetwater Road, Jackson rammed the motorcycle from behind and then ran over the victim, Evans alleged.
Paramedics took Buob to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.   

Jackson -- who's being held on $1 million bail and faces 15 years to life in prison if convicted -- will be back in court Dec. 23. Trial was set for Jan. 12.

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