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Evidence issues delay case for Utah man charged in fatal hit-and-run

Published July 9, 2014 12:54 pm

Courts • Prosecutors allege driver was drunk when he ran down pedestrian.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Farmington • A defense attorney for a man accused of driving drunk and hitting and killing a pedestrian in Clearfield in May asked a judge for more time Wednesday to decide whether to set a trial date or resolve the case.

Jose Antonio Cortez Orozco, 37, has pleaded not guilty in 2nd District Court to charges of second-degree felony automobile homicide in Kelly Allred's May 20 death, along with charges of felony failure to stop for police, leaving the scene of an injury or fatal accident, and misdemeanor violation of a protective order.

On Wednesday during a brief court appearance, defense attorney Todd Utzinger said he has received more evidence in the case, and needs 30 days to translate that evidence into Spanish for Orozco. Another hearing was set for Aug. 13.

Police said events leading to the fatal accident began when Orozco went to the Freeport Center in Clearfield at about 10 p.m. on May 20 with flowers for his estranged wife, despite a protective order forbidding contact with her.

Police, notified of the violation, later spotted Orozco driving in the area and tried to pull him over.

Orozco, according to a probable cause statement, refused to stop and accelerated away from police. A brief high-speed chase ensued, but the pursuit was soon terminated for public safety reasons.

Orozco was believed to be traveling at 60 mph or more when, about 10 minutes later, he allegedly struck Allred in the intersection of 700 South (Highway 193) and State Street (Highway 26).

Allred's mother, Darla Allred, told The Tribune in May that said her son had just got off work before the accident. He was hungry, and decided to go to a nearby Maverik convenience store for a snack. She said her son walked everywhere — he didn't own a car — so the stroll to buy two hot dogs and a bag of Doritos was not uncommon for the man.

The mother said her son was walking back from the convenience store when he was struck. Kelly Allred died after about four hours at the hospital, the mother said.

Orozco was later arrested at his North Salt Lake home.

After the arrest, Orozco allegedly failed several field sobriety tests, and a blood sample also was taken, showing a blood alcohol level of 0.15, nearly twice the legal limit of 0.08.

Orozco remains in the Davis County jail under a federal immigration hold order, as well as $50,000 bail.

Court records show Orozco had pleaded guilty to a class A misdemeanor for violating a protective order in connection with a Dec. 7, 2013, incident involving his estranged wife. Just days before that, Orozco had pleaded guilty to class B misdemeanor counts of assault, criminal mischief and domestic violence in the presence of a child

On Jan. 7, he was given a 305-day suspended jail sentence and ordered to serve 120 days home confinement on condition he wear an ankle monitor and complete two years' probation.


Twitter: @jm_miller