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Oceano man who drove off Hwy. 101, killing two people, pleads no contest

Jerardo Iriarte, 19, of Oceano was arrested Saturday, Oct. 16, 2010, on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence after allegedly driving his car off Highway 101 intentionally, killing two pedestrians. Original story »
Plea: N/A What's next: Further arraignment scheduled for 1/16/11.
Jerardo Iriarte, 19, of Oceano was arrested Saturday, Oct. 16, 2010, on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence after allegedly driving his car off Highway 101 intentionally, killing two pedestrians. Original story » Plea: N/A What's next: Further arraignment scheduled for 1/16/11.

The Oceano man accused of crashing his car into a couple walking in Pismo Beach and killing them has entered a no-contest plea to second-degree murder and faces a possible life sentence in state prison, according to the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office.

Jerardo Iriarte, 20, entered the plea at San Luis Obispo Superior Court on Wednesday and is scheduled for sentencing Aug. 17. He faces 15 years to life in prison.

A no-contest plea results in a conviction without an admission of guilt.

Authorities say Iriarte was trying to hurt himself Oct. 16 when he drove off Highway 101 near the Marie Callender’s restaurant where his ex-girlfriend was working that day.

Iriarte struck and killed Bruce Mallin, 63, and his 59-year-old wife, Marjorie.

Iriarte’s public defender, Ron Crawford, represented him in Judge Hugh Mullin’s courtroom. Karen Gray handled the case for the prosecution.

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