Charges Filed Against Driver In Deadly MacArthur Cswy Crash
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South Florida Crime
MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) — Charges have been filed against the driver of the black Lamborghini who police say was driving 120 miles per hour when he caused a deadly horrific crash on the MacArthur Causeway Thursday morning.
The loved ones of a victim whose Suburban was hit by the Lamborghini are speaking out.
“I was angry because he was reckless and the man who was hit was my dad,” said 16-year-old Helen Alfonzo, whose 46-year-old father Raul Alfonzo is in the intensive care unit of Jackson Memorial Hospital after police say his suburban was struck by the speeding Lamborghini.
“My mom came into my room and woke me up and said your dad has been in accident. She turned on the TV and they had the accident on already,” she told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench. “He’s a really good dad. He looks tough and scary but he is just a big teddy bear.”
“I’ve seen all the crashes on TV but this has never happened to me,” she said. “And then when I find out the driver of the Lamborghini may have been drinking, it made me angry and sad. How can someone be so reckless and irresponsible. You shouldn’t be doing stupid decisions and think it’s ok. You could get hurt and others could get hurt.”
“He’s doing really bad. He had a really bad pain all over his body,” said Alfonzo’s wife Yinet Pacheco.”My feelings are that this is really bad. I don’t have a car now, nothing. My husband is in the hospital. I have two kids.”
On Thursday, just before 3:00 a.m., the Lamborghini slammed into the Alfonzo’s Chevrolet Suburban stopped at the light on the causeway at Fountain Street.
“After striking the Suburban, the Lamborghini continued about 100 yards after impact which is indicative of a very high rate of speed,” said Detective Bobby Hernandez on Thursday. “There were total of three victims. Unfortunately, one of them passed away on the scene. He was a passenger in the Lamborghini.”
A new police report says that the Lamborghini was going more than 120 miles per hour in a 50 mile per hour zone. The report says that the Lamborghini tried to change lanes and struck the Suburban. The report said there was no evidence that the driver tried to brake for the red light and demonstrated a “willful and wanton disregard for persons or property.”
The officer on the scene said he observed that the driver of the Lamborghini had “bloodshot watery eyes and a strong smell of an alcoholic beverage…and slurred speech.”
Alfonzo family attorney Glen Goldberg told D’Oench that his law firm was considering filing a lawsuit in this case.
“How many fatalities in Miami-Dade county before we put an end to this drunk driving,” he said. “It is reckless to all involved and everyone in the community. This terrible accident could have been prevented. We hope everyone will exercise more caution to avoid instances like this one.”
Detective Hernandez told CBS4 that vehicular homicide charges have been filed against the driver—53-year-old Andres Esteban Toro.
Toro is still recovering in the hospital, but could face additional charges including DUI manslaughter and DUI serious bodily injury.
Prosecutor Laura Adams said police at the scene detected a strong odor of alcohol and told the judge the standard $7,500 bond needed to be increased to prevent him from leaving town.
“Two separate blood draws were conducted and we are waiting on those toxicology reports,” Adams told bond court Judge Samantha Ruiz-Cohen. “It is the state’s belief that standard bond given the enormous resources that this particular defendant has including multiple vehicles, including Aston Martins, the Lamborghini…we are concerned about the potential for a flight risk.”
Toro’s attorney Kendall Coffey waived his appearance and said Toro was being treated differently because of his wealth.
“He shouldn’t be singled-out simply for some conditions that are beyond what others who are charged with this particular crime should be subjected to,” Coffey said. “There are other people in this community have some degree of financial success, nor should they be treated differently.”
Ultimately, the judge sided with the prosecutor and ordered him held on $100,000 bond plus house arrest with electronic monitoring, once he recovers from the injuries. He will also not be allowed to drive or drink alcohol.
Police said Toro and his passenger, Dr. Malcolm Lloyd, 42, had been at the Versace mansion before the crash. He said it could be a few weeks before the results of the blood alcohol tests on Toro are known. He said if alcohol was a factor, Toro would likely be charged with DUI manslaughter.
CBS4 learned that Alfonzo had been working a night shift at the Ocean’s Ten restaurant and bar at 10th Street and Ocean Drive as a security guard. He was headed home to Sweetwater after working his night shift. A manager told D’Oench that Alfonzo had only been working there for less than two weeks.
Coincidentally, that bar and restaurant is about a block away from the Versace Mansion.
Goldberg said Alfonzo had to undergo more surgery Friday at Jackson Memorial Hospital.
Lloyd, who was killed in the accident, was the founder and CEO of Old Nassau Imports, a luxury alcohol company. According to a press release, Dr. Lloyd was honored as one of 2012′s most innovative entrepreneurs.
The company issued a statement which read, in part, “All of us at Old Nassau Imports are heartbroken over the loss our friend and leader. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time.”
The deadly crash caused the MacArthur causeway to be closed down for several hours while police conducted their investigation into the crash. The closure caused bumper to bumper traffic for miles.
Motorists driving by were horrified by images of the collision. The impact was so hard, the SUV’s wheels were knocked off.
“Oh my God. I was thinking who is the person in there? You know it’s very sad,” said a driver who identified herself as Marcia.
Palm Island residents had to be given a police escort eastbound in the westbound lanes to get off the island. Most of them described it as inconvenient but understandable given the circumstance.
“It’s been kind of crazy trying to get my kids to school but the wreck looks horrible. I feel really bad for the people involved,” said Nicole Boswell, a Palm Island resident.