16-Year State Prison Sentence for Conviction of Gross Vehicular Manslaughter While Intoxicated

OAKLAND -- Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley announced today that Tiffany Reynolds, 28, has been sentenced to serve 16 years in State Prison as a result of her conviction of four counts of Gross Vehicular Manslaughter while intoxicated.

On May 25, 2009, at 1:30 am, the defendant was seen speeding and weaving northbound on I-880 in Oakland. It was estimated she was traveling at up to 90 mph. She had four passengers in the car: 23 year-old Sara Terra, 20 year-old David Terra, and Sara’s 3 year-old twins, Jason and Jesse. As a result of the defendant’s reckless driving, she lost control of the 1990 Honda and crashed into a concrete support beam at the Hegenberger exit. Ms. Terra, her brother David (who was celebrating his birthday) and one of Ms. Terra’s twin boys were killed in the collision. Ms. Terra’s other twin died at Children’s Hospital after being taken off life support.

Defendant Reynolds had a blood alcohol level of .21, nearly three times the legal limit.

District Attorney O’Malley states, “As evidenced by these events, impaired driving due to alcohol consumption is a significant crime that can and does result tragedy. On May 25, 2009, Tiffany Reynolds killed four innocent young people because she drank and drove. The grief felt by the family of the victims is immeasurable. I hope that today’s sentence offers some closure and solace to them.

"I also hope that the message is loud and clear that every impaired driving situation is a crime that will not be tolerated in Alameda County. My Office is committed to educating the public about drinking and driving and also committed to prosecuting driving under the influence cases to avoid future loss of life and to keep our streets and highways safe for law abiding drivers.”

Alameda County is one of four counties selected by the Legislature for a pilot project. Interlock devices must be installed on every vehicle of a person convicted of driving under the influence as a consequence of that conviction. The defendant~driver must blow into the device and if the device detects any alcohol, the car will not start. Alameda County is also a leader in “Avoid the 21” which is an initiative with local law enforcement to detect and apprehend drivers who are impaired before they can hurt or kill an innocent victim.

Posted on Jun 17, 2011