Driver pleads not guilty to charges in death of nanny

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A driver who struck and killed a nanny pushing a baby in a stroller in Torrey Highlands last month pleaded not guilty Friday to misdemeanor charges of failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk and failure to stop at a red light.

Christine Padilla, 35, is charged in connection with the death of 41-year-old Monserrat Mendez.

Padilla was scheduled to be arraigned Monday, but according to court officials, her attorney “counter-arraigned” the defendant a day early. She faces up to a year in jail if convicted.

The accident at Camino del Sur and Via Verrazzano happened Feb. 1 about 11:45 a.m., according to San Diego police.

Investigators said the impact threw Mendez 30 feet and dragged the stroller with a 13-month-old boy strapped inside across the intersection, leaving it wedged under Padilla’s Toyota 4Runner.

Medics took Mendez to Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, where she was pronounced dead. The toddler was taken to Rady Children’s Hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries, including scrapes and bruises, SDPD public-affairs Lt. Andra Brown said.

An investigation revealed that Padilla was not speeding or talking on her cell phone when the accident occurred, although she had just had a baby the day before, according to police.

A readiness conference for Padilla is scheduled April 24.

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Posted by Staff on Mar 15 2013. Filed under Local News, Rancho Bernardo/4S Ranch (Click here for more stories). You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

8 Comments for “Driver pleads not guilty to charges in death of nanny”

  1. Pay attention

    How are you not guilty for running a red light while texting on your cell phone?

  2. blk mtn mom

    People ran red lights long before there were cell phones… and often because they were trying to beat the yellow. I'm not saying she did that, thought there's no evidence to rule out that possibility. No matter what the reason, she ran the red light. There is evidence to that fact established in the police report. So why is the max sentence only 1 year when SHE KILLED A PERSON WHILE IN THE PROCESS OF BREAKING A LAW????

  3. Sparky

    Because it's a misdemeanor that's why she won't serve more time. And if "pay attention" would read the article – the woman was not texting or using her cell phone.

  4. blk mtn mom

    She tried to beat the light. She failed, and in the process she killed someone. Why is that only a misdemeanor???? Her selfish actions took a persons life.

  5. Grow up Sparky

    Sparky, not everyone runs red lights. Not sure what your'e getting at, but In my opinion your way off base. She killed someone for christ sake. Bet you wouldn't feel the same if it was someone you loved.

    • Sparky

      I'm only commenting that the rage to punish someone with years and years of jail time is off base. The driver ran a red light. It happens. The woman who was killed should have looked before crossing – did that occur to you? No. Of course not. Just because the sign says "walk" doesn't mean you just jump off the curb – especially with a stroller. I'm not excusing the person who ran the red – I'm just pointing out that the rush to punish is off the mark.

  6. Joe St. Lucas

    She'll only be in jail a year so that she can get out and get a good job to pay for the wrongful death lawsuit that is certain to follow.

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