Update – February 12, 2016
YUMA, Ariz. – A Yuma man responsible of fatally crashing into another car while fleeing from police is sentenced today.
20-year old Daniel Ruiz was in Yuma county superior court this morning.
He is sentenced to 16 calendar years in the department of corrections.
This – after what happened on July 3rd of this year.
Ruiz was in a minor fender bender and then offered to money for repairs before fleeing.
He then ran a stop sign at nearly 80 miles per hour….crashing into a second car.
The driver of that car, 63-year-old Maria Manriquez, was thrown from her car and pronounced dead at the scene.
Ruiz was taken to the hospital with minor injuries, but once released he was booked on multiple charges including first degree murder.
In court today, Ruiz read an apology letter to the family of the victim.
A child of Manriquez also spoke – wishing personal growth for Ruiz while he’s locked away.225 days have been credited towards his sentence.
He will now remain at the Department of Corrections.
July 6, 2015 – One person is dead after authorities say 20-year-old Daniel Ruiz hit two cars in Yuma Friday afternoon. Witness Salvador Delgado says Ruiz hit his car first off Vaughn Ave. and Jupiter St. claiming minor injuries to his Honda. Delgado says he offered Ruiz a cheap alternative to fix it without going through insurance. “I told him it’s going to cost you less than $150 dollars, hey let’s go to Mexico get my car fixed in three hours, hey you’re good to go,” said Delgado.
Instead he says Ruiz recklessly fled the scene at speeds of more than 80 miles per hour, costing a life. Yuma County Sheriff’s report Ruiz ran through a stop sign at 8th St. and Date Ave. where he hit a second vehicle, causing 63-year-old Maria Manriquez to fly out of her car. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Ruiz was taken to the hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. When released he was booked that Yuma County Detention Center for 1st degree murder, narcotics violation and aggravated assault. Authorities report Ruiz may have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash.
“I could tell that he had drugs in his system and he was hung over or whatever because he was drunk,” said Delgado.
An unnamed passenger with Ruiz at the time could face charges too. Alfonso Zavala, spokesman for the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office said, “The second subject was detained at the time the case is still ongoing and charges may be pending on that subject however at this time we still are investigating.”
Ruiz’s bond is set at $1.5 million.