Jerardo Iriarte, who has pleaded not guilty to charges of two counts of vehicular manslaughter in connection with a wreck that killed two Washington state tourists in October, was arrested Sunday morning while out on bail.
Iriate, 20, was arrested on suspicion of being under the influence of an illegal drug after a sheriff’s deputy responded to a call of a person acting strangely in the 2000 block of Laguna Negra Lane in Arroyo Grande about 11:25 a.m.
Iriarte was out on $50,000 bail; he is now being held in The San Luis Obispo County Jail without bail.
On Oct. 16, Bruce and Marjorie Mallin -- avid travelers who explored the U.S. and Canada in their recreation vehicle -- were on a morning walk on Price Street near Marie Callender’s restaurant in Pismo Beach when a car came crashing through a fence from Highway 101 and struck them about 7:30 a.m.
Iriarte had been trying to reunite with his ex-girlfriend before the wreck, according to police.
Minutes before the wreck, they’d talked at Marie Callender’s, where she was starting her morning shift; he’d knocked over a pie in anger at the restaurant because of her refusal to discuss the matter that morning, she told Pismo Beach police, according to a warrant.
Police believed that Iriarte was trying to hurt himself in the crash but not to kill himself or hurt anyone else; he isn’t suspected of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the crash.
He has pleaded not guilty to charges of two counts of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and also faces legal enhancements of causing great bodily injury during the commission of a felony.