Woman faces misdemeanor charge in cyclist’s death
By Neal Putnam
A woman who was allegedly driving under the influence of methamphetamine in a chain reaction crash that killed a bicyclist and pushed a parked car into Mike’s Liquor a year ago has been charged with two misdemeanor offenses.
Following a long investigation, the District Attorney’s office did not charge Suzanne Nicole Reed, 33, with the death of David Bruce Menea, 54, of Ramona, who was killed on Sept. 11, 2010, on Main Street in Ramona.
Reed is charged with driving under the influence of methamphetamine and being under the influence of the drug in the same incident. Both are misdemeanor offenses.
Deputy District Attorney Andrew Aguilar called it “an issuing decision” by the office and would not discuss why Reed was not charged with vehicular manslaughter. The misdemeanor charges were filed last month.
“The case is still ongoing,” said Aguilar.
If Reed is convicted, she could face one year in jail, said Aguilar. He did confirm that Reed has a prior conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol, but he said no alcohol was involved in the 2010 crash.
Menea was on his bicycle on Main Street around 9 p.m. and the California Highway Patrol representative said at the time Reed struck the bicyclist before hitting a stop sign and a parked car with two people inside. Reed was driving a sports utility vehicle and it went over an embankment.
The parked car was a Volkswagen that was pushed into the liquor store’s front door. Two people in the car complained of pain, and the store’s cashier was struck by flying debris. Reed and the cashier were taken to a hospital.
Reed, of El Cajon, pleaded not guilty via her attorney’s fax arraignment on Aug. 16 through her attorney, according to court records. He could not be reached for comment. Only people charged with misdemeanors can be arraigned via a fax transmission.
People charged with misdemeanor offenses are not required to appear personally in court unless the judge orders it. Reed remains free on her own recognizance.
The next hearing is set for Sept. 20 in El Cajon Superior Court. A trial date has not been set.
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