The woman accused of driving under the influence when she hit a Newport Harbor High School senior in a crosswalk pleaded not guilty this week and was released on a $100,000 bond, according to the Orange County District Attorney's office.
Marnie Jo Lippincott is scheduled to return to court Feb. 17 for a pretrial hearing.
Lippincott, 38, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a felony charge of driving under the influence causing bodily injury, with a sentencing enhancement for causing brain injury. She also faces a misdemeanor charge of driving without a license. If convicted, Lippincott faces eight years in prison.
Prosecutors say Lippincott was high on drugs and booze at the time of the , which left with head trauma, internal bleeding and brain swelling. Doctors later induced a coma. Court records show Lippincott has a string of convictions on charges ranging from burglary to obtaining prescriptions through fraud.
This week, some of Crystal's friends held to raise money for her medical bills. So far, their efforts have collected more than $5,000. In addition, a local business owner who has two kids that also attend Newport Harbor High donated $10,000.
Anyone interested in donating can stop by a Bank of America branch and make a deposit into the Crystal Morales account. Checks and get well cards can also be dropped off at Newport Harbor High School for the Morales Family.