Utah man sentenced to prison for deadly alcohol-related crash

(Photo courtesy of Utah County Sheriff's Office) Ricardo Oswaldo Estrada.

A 27-year-old man has been sentenced to prison for an alcohol-related crash that killed a woman in Utah County last year.

Ricardo Oswaldo Estrada, of Midway, had pleaded guilty to third-degree felony automobile homicide in the Nov. 20, 2016, death of 54-year-old Maria Rodriguez.

On Wednesday, 4th District Judge Thomas Low sentenced Estrada to zero to five years at the Utah State Prison.

At about 1:50 a.m. on the day of the crash, Estrada was driving north in a southbound lane on University Avenue when his Jeep crashed head-on with a sedan driven by Rodriguez at about 800 North, near the mouth of Provo Canyon, witnesses told police.

Rodriguez’s car caught on fire “immediately after the collision,” charging documents state, and paramedics who found her unresponsive and without a pulse pronounced her dead at the scene.

Police and medical personnel reported that Estrada smelled of alcohol and had slurred speech. He was confused, charges state, and didn’t know what city he was in. He also admitted to drinking alcohol before getting in his car to drive home.

Estrada was initially charged with second-degree felony auto homicide, as well as driving on a denied license, a class C misdemeanor, and driving on the wrong side of a roadway, an infraction.

In 2011, Estrada pleaded guilty to driving with a measurable amount of a controlled substance in his system, a class B misdemeanor, and driving on a denied license, a class C misdemeanor. His sentence of 60 days in jail was suspended, and he paid more than $1,000 in fines and was ordered to complete 24 hours of community service.

Return to Story