A California Highway Patrol officer is facing criminal charges of misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter after he fatally struck a pedestrian in Bixby Knolls in 2019, according to authorities.
CHP Officer Alfredo Oros Gutierrez, 38, is accused of negligent driving and excessive speed while on-duty, which resulted in the death of 24-year-old Cezannie Mount, according to a criminal complaint filed by the Long Beach City Prosecutor’s office.
According to CHP officers who responded to the crash, Gutierrez was on a motorcycle when he fatally struck Mount who was crossing Del Amo Boulevard outside of a crosswalk just west of Cherry Avenue at about 4:40 a.m. on Oct. 27, 2019.
Mount died at the scene, authorities said. Guitierrez was also injured in the crash and was transported to a local hospital to treat major head trauma, officials said.
“The facts in this case suggest that excessive speed may have been a factor,” Long Beach City Prosecutor Douglas Haubert said in a statement. “We have to review the facts of each case and make a filing decision based on the evidence and what logical conclusions can be drawn from the evidence. That is what we did in this case.”
Gutierrez was charged with vehicular manslaughter in October 2020, nearly one year after the fatal crash. If convicted, Gutierrez could face up to a year in county jail.
Court records show Gutierrez hasn’t yet entered a plea to the charges. He’s expected back in court on March 19, 2021 at the Governor George Deukmejian Courthouse.
A CHP captain told the Press-Telegram, which first reported on the charges against Gutierrez, that he is still working at the CHP South Los Angeles office, where he’s assigned to duties that don’t involve any interaction with the public.
A phone number listed for Gutierrez was disconnected Tuesday. It wasn’t immediately clear if he was represented by an attorney.