crimesider

13 years in prison for driver in Halloween hit-and-run

Jaquinn Bell

CBS Los Angeles

SANTA ANA, Calif. - An Orange County, Calif. man has been sentenced to more than 13 years in state prison for killing three teenage trick-or-treaters in a hit-and-run on Halloween.

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Thirteen-year-old twins Lexandra and Lexi Perez, left, and their friend, Andrea Gonzalez, right
CBS Los Angeles

A spokeswoman for the D.A. says 32-year-old Jaquinn Bell was sentenced Thursday to 13 years and eight months in state prison, plus six months in jail for the killings. Bell also got another 18 months in jail for a probation violation.

Bell pleaded guilty in March to three felony counts of vehicular manslaughter and other charges.

Prosecutors say he drove through a Santa Ana crosswalk going more than 60 mph and struck and killed three 13-year-old girls, including twins, before fleeing the scene.

CBS Los Angeles reports police said Bell's 17-year-old son and 14-year-old daughter were in the vehicle with him at the time of the crash.

He was arrested Nov. 2, 2014, after police found his damaged car abandoned in a parking lot.

According to CBS Los Angeles, Bell was on probation at the time of the deadly crash for a drunken hit-and-run crash in Anaheim. Prosecutors said that since Bell fled the scene of the Halloween night crash, they could not charge him with driving under the influence, a factor that could have led to a murder charge and a possible life prison term.

The station reports Bell has a lengthy criminal record that includes charges of domestic violence and child abuse.