Man accused of killing woman in 2018 Vado crash pleads guilty to homicide by vehicle

Crime

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The man accused of killing a woman in a three-car crash in 2018 in Vado pleaded guilty to homicide by vehicle (DWI) and two counts of great bodily harm by vehicle (DWI).

Ruben Rojas, 59, pleaded guilty to the charges on Friday in the Third Judicial District Court in Las Cruces.

The defense asked that sentencing be delayed. Third Judicial District Court Judge Conrad Perea will schedule sentencing in 30 days.

The three-car crash happened at 11 p.m. on Nov. 15, 2018, near Vado on Interstate 10. Michael Cuaron was driving a gold Nissan sedan that had broken down along the highway. He called his mother, Michelle Cuaron, and sister, Nicolle Michelle Cuaron, to help him. Michelle was driving a small, gold SUV. which she parked behind the sedan and put on the emergency flashers to wait for a tow truck. All the family got into the SUV to wait.

According to court records, a Silver Dodge was traveling east on I-10. Investigators found no brake marks on the roadway when the Dodge hit the gold SUV from behind. pushing it into the small sedan.

Both Michelle Cuaron and Nicolle Cuaron were taken to an El Paso hospital, with Michael Cuaron airlifted to University Medical Center in El Paso. Michelle Cuaron was pronounced dead at the hospital, while Nicolle suffered from a spine fracture and both ankles fractured. Michael sustained several fractures and multiple organ injuries.

Rojas was found in the driver seat of the pickup truck and smelled of alcohol, according to police reports. He reportedly had a gash on his head. Rojas told the police officers that he didn’t recall anything that happened prior to the crash.

He was transported to Mountain View Hospital for treatment and an alcohol blood test.  It was also reported that two open beer containers were found in Rojas’s pickup truck.

Rojas was booked into Doña Ana County Detention Center, but was later released on bond.

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