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Mom accused of DUI crash that killed 5-year-old, injured toddlers pleads not guilty

Prosecutors said Kapri Coleman had a .167 blood-alcohol level after the crash and cocaine, marijuana and amphetamines were detected in her blood.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif — A San Diego woman accused of driving drunk and crashing her car in Bonsall, killing her 5-year-old daughter and injuring her two toddlers, plead not guilty Tuesday. Kapri Raven Coleman's daughter Kesha was killed and her two other children seriously injured when the 27-year-old mother allegedly crashed down a steep embankment off Interstate 15 in unincorporated Escondido last week. 

Dispatchers received a call about 2:25 a.m. on Wednesday from a person who reported seeing a vehicle swerve and then tumble down a hill off the right side of northbound Interstate 15 north of Gopher Canyon Road, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The vehicle ended up at least 150 feet down the hillside, the CHP reported.

Prosecutors in a North County San Diego court said Coleman had a .167 blood-alcohol level after the crash and cocaine, marijuana and amphetamines were detected in her blood.

Of her two surviving children, 1-year-old son Knowledge has been released from the hospital while the other - 3-year-old daughter Keymaih - remained in care as of Tuesday. 

Coleman's two daughters were thrown from the vehicle during the crash, according to CHP. Knowledge was found strapped in his car seat. Kesha was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Coleman's father Derrick Palacio told News 8 on Friday finding out about the crash was one of the worst moments of his life. 

"Oh my God... there's no way to explain the feelings that I felt when they told me Kesha was gone. It was like being hit on the head with a sledgehammer. I took my grandbabies to Chuck-E-Cheese on July 12 and this weekend, we were supposed to be going to Water World. I got their tutus and their bathing suits and stuff already," Palacio said.

Palacio said July 14 will be a day he never forgets. The crash happened just hours after the family celebrated Kesha turning 5 on July 13. 

"I woke up at 2 or 3 in the morning because our phones had been going off. I wanted help for my daughter because she was going down the wrong path. But this isn't the way I wanted for her. I thought that we could do it together as a family," he said.

A protective order was issued Tuesday for Coleman to stay away from the children. 

Her bail status will be reviewed at a readiness hearing on Aug. 5. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Aug. 10. 

The family has started a GoFundMe to help pay for Kesha's final arrangements and Knowledge and Keymaih's medical bills. 

To donate, click here.

WATCH RELATED: Family prepares to lay 5-year-old killed in DUI crash to rest


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