Sus­pect in fa­tal Taos crash freed on bond

Santa Fe New Mexican - - LOCAL & REGION -

TAOS — Juan Espinoza, a 21-year-old Bak­ers­field, Calif., res­i­dent charged with mul­ti­ple counts of homi­cide by ve­hi­cle in a fa­tal car crash late last month, was re­leased on bond from the Taos County jail this week.

Espinoza’s orig­i­nal $200,000 cash-only bond was re­duced to a $20,000 cash surety bond dur­ing a Mag­is­trate Court hear­ing Oct. 5, re­quir­ing that he post just $2,000.

The 8th Ju­di­cial Dis­trict At­tor­ney’s Of­fice did not seek a no-bond hold for the case, which would have kept Espinoza in­car­cer­ated un­til trial.

Law en­force­ment booked Espinoza in the county jail fol­low­ing the Sept. 30 crash on N.M. 68.

Han­nah Met­zger, 25, a sea­sonal res­i­dent of Taos and Santa Fe from Del­ray Beach, Fla., and Cedrick Kober, 33, a sea­sonal res­i­dent of Santa Fe from Lit­tle River, S.C., both died in the crash. The third vic­tim, Cody Woolard, 26, of Taos, re­mains in crit­i­cal con­di­tion, ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cials.

Espinoza was ex­pected to re­turn to Cal­i­for­nia, where he will be re­quired to main­tain con­tact with his at­tor­ney and ap­pear for court dates. A pre­lim­i­nary hear­ing is set Oct. 26.

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