A Burbank man charged with two counts of murder is expected to have his preliminary hearing Feb. 13, according to a deputy district attorney prosecuting a man charged for allegedly driving drunk in a fatal, early morning crash on Highway 14.
Don’t miss a thing. Get breaking Santa Clarita news alerts delivered right to your inbox.
Bradford E. Pate, 38, of Burbank, is being charged with killing the Rev. Manard Giles, and Mattie Lee Ferguson in a wrong-way crash.
“He wasn’t present in court today, but we selected a preliminary hearing date,” said Mykka Piantanida of the District Attorney’s Office.
At a preliminary hearing, the prosecution will present its case and a judge will decide if there’s enough evidence to merit a trial.
Both sides have already undertaken a lengthy “discovery” process, in which evidence is shared between both sides, Piantanida said.
Detectives believe a truck driven by Pate was driving the wrong way on the freeway when it struck a car driven by Giles in which Lee was a passenger. There were also several others who sustained injuries of varying degrees in subsequent crashes.
Pate, who’s in custody, missed his court date Wednesday due to a doctor’s appointment, so he must appear Dec. 26 in order to waive the standard time.
A preliminary hearing generally takes place within 15 days of the setting, unless a defendant “waives time.”
Pate missed court dates early on due to injuries he sustained in the June 22 crash.
Pate is facing two murder charges, a charge of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, a DUI causing injury and the charge of a DUI with a blood-alcohol level above 0.08 percent causing injury.
Pate allegedly drove a 2006 Toyota Tundra south into the northbound lanes of Highway 14, near Escondido Canyon Road, at 3:28 a.m. Saturday, when he collided with a 2006 Chrysler 300, which swerved and struck a rideshare van, according to a CHP report.
If convicted, Pate faces up to life in prison.
Pate already was convicted of DUI in 2007 in Ventura County.
He’s being held in lieu of $3 million bail at Men’s Central Jail in Los Angeles.
Do you have a news tip? Call us at (661) 298-1220, or drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: Santa Clarita News