A Missouri woman charged with the infamous theft of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s name plate during the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol Complex is facing an altogether more serious legal issue in her home state as of this week. According to the Missouri Highway Patrol, Emily Hernandez, 22, was driving drunk on the wrong side of the highway during a fatal crash that killed another motorist on Wednesday evening in Franklin County.
The incident occurred on Interstate 44 and resulted in the death of 32-year-old Victoria Wilson, authorities allege. Another man, Wilson’s husband, who was driving the car, was also seriously injured.
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the crash happened just after 7:00 p.m. on the night in question. The cars collided in the eastbound lane of I-44. Hernandez herself also reportedly suffered serious injuries and was treated at a nearby hospital.
Hernandez was issued a citation for one count each of driving while intoxicated resulting in death and driving while intoxicated resulting in injury. Both are felonies according to MHP Corporal Dallas Thompson.
A trooper with the agency is reportedly seeking formal charges from the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office. Franklin County Prosecutor Matt Becker said those charges will come after the results from a full toxicology report are released, according to St. Louis CBS affiliate KMOV.
The TV station’s report contains shocking details of the incident:
Truck driver Jeff Barlow recorded video of a car going in the wrong direction on the interstate. He said the car was going around 60 mph and he tracked six miles trying to get the driver to realize they were in the wrong lane.
Barlow said Wilson’s car was in the left lane and a truck in the right lane prevented them from getting over. He described the collision as looking like an explosion.
“Everybody was first for her,” Wilson’s sister Angie Ortiz told the station. “She always put herself last to make sure everyone was taken care of.”
A GoFundMe was started by Ortiz to cover those out-of-nowhere funeral expenses as well as the family’s hospital bills.
“My baby sister Vickie Wilson was killed last night by a drunk driver,” the grieving sister wrote. “Her husband Ryan (36) is in the hospital awaiting surgery from the car accident and her kids Landon (15) and Eli (10) are staying with my parents. I’m asking for funds to help pay for the funeral that we now have to plan for her.”
The grisly auto crash occurred on the eve of the one-year anniversary of the pro-Trump siege within and surrounding the national seat of legislative government. Hernandez is currently facing five federal misdemeanors over her alleged actions at the capitol. According to her attorney, she was planning on pleading out to one such charge this coming Monday.
That timeline may now change.
“The exact circumstances of the accident are unclear,” Hernandez’s attorney Ethan Corlija told KMOV. “It’s unfortunate. I am heartbroken for the others involved.”
Hernandez was linked to the abortive effort to stop the counting of electoral college votes by way of two tipsters who allegedly knew the defendant in real life and through social media.
[image via ITV screengrab]
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