Driver in Santaluz Stroller Crash Faces Multiple Charges

Driver Christine Padilla faces three charges in connection with the crash


A North County attorney faces multiple criminal charges in connection with a crash that killed a nanny and seriously injured a toddler officials announced Monday.

Monserrat Mendez, 41, was killed when an SUV ran a red light at the intersection of Camino Del Sur and Via Verrazzano on Feb. 1.

Mendez was pushing a 14-month-old toddler in a stroller at the time of the crash. Mendez suffered critical injuries and later died at the hospital.

The toddler was hospitalized in intensive care for several days for injuries including shattered spleen, fractured femur, pelvic fracture, broken rib, broken leg and skull fracture.

After a month-long investigation by San Diego police, the SUV driver, Christine Padilla of Del Sur, faces charges of vehicular manslaughter, failure to stop at a red light and failure to yield to a pedestrian within a crosswalk .

After the crash, NBC 7 San Diego ran a check on the vehicle’s license plate and learned the car was registered to a Jeffrey Padilla who lives near the scene of the accident.

A man who identified himself as a Mr. Padilla answered the door of the home and said his wife was too distraught to issue a statement.

“Please, she’s gone through enough,” Padilla said at the time. “There’s no way we can give a statement right now. We have a one-day-old baby.”

Padilla answered the door at the same address Monday night holding a baby. She refused comment.

Her Linkedin profile lists her as a contract attorney who graduated from USD School of Law in 2005 and San Diego State University in 2001 with a BA in Psychology.

Her arraignment date is set for March 18 at 12:30 p.m.

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