NORTH HILLS (CBSLA.com) — Charges have been filed against an undocumented immigrant with a lengthy criminal past after a crash that killed a North Hills mother of two.
Crushed by the loss of their daughter, the parents and family of Sandra Duran, 42, tried Tuesday to comprehend the circumstances of their daughter’s death.
Duran, a mother of two and set to be married, was killed Feb. 19 at Plummer and Sepulveda. She was on her way home from church and set to eat with her family.
Two other family members were in the car with Duran at the time of the crash. They both are recovering from their injuries.
“I was there at church … and I was sitting right next to her,” said Anthony Campos, Duran’s nephew. “When I got the news, I was just shocked. I didn’t know how to react because I was just with her.”
“When your daughter disappears from one morning to the next couple of hours, it just hits everybody,” said Santos Duran, the victim’s father.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said the man accused of causing the crash, Estuardo Alvarado, had three prior convictions for driving under the influence. Federal authorities say he is undocumented and has been deported to Mexico five times since 1998, most recently in 2011.
“It hurts when somebody out of nowhere just takes your daughter’s life, and then you see the record he had … Why is this guy on the streets?” Santos Duran asked. “Why didn’t they put him away?”
Duran was one of four daughters, and she also had a brother. Even in a big family with two kids of her own, Sandra Duran stood out, bringing heart and life to any room.
“We’re trying to make a good living, good life for us,” Santos Duran said. “All of a sudden, it’s just destroyed.”