The Costa Mesa driver who Tuesday was high on drugs and booze, prosecutors said Thursday.
Marnie Jo Lippincott, 38, faces eight years in prison on charges of driving under the influence causing bodily injury, with a sentencing enhancement for causing brain injury and paralysis, according to a press release from the District Attorney's office. She also faces a misdemeanor charge of driving without a license.
Lippincott was scheduled to enter her plea Thursday afternoon in Santa Ana, but the hearing was postponed to Dec. 21, according to City News Service. Bail was set at $100,000.
According to prosecutors, at approximately 2:53 p.m. Tuesday, Lippincott was driving her black Chevrolet Tahoe north on Irvine Avenue when she allegedly failed to yield for pedestrians in the crosswalk at Margaret Drive and hit 17-year-old Crystal Morales, who was leaving school with two friends.
Morales was thrown several feet and suffered a brain injury. She was taken to Western Medical Center in Santa Ana in critical condition and later placed in a medically induced coma.
Newport Beach police responded to the scene, gave a series of field sobriety tests to Lippincott, and found her unable to safely operate a motor vehicle, prosecutors said. She was also driving without a license, because it had previously been suspended by the DMV, the D.A. said.
Court records show Lippincott has a string of convictions on charges ranging from burglary to obtaining prescriptions through fraud.
Deputy District Attorney Nancy Hayashida of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting the case.