Deanna Marie Soto's Release in Crash Death of Robert Lavender III May Be Temporary: Officials

Categories: DUI-yi-yi

Courtesy of Trystn Rena
Robert Lavender III's motorcycle was struck by a Nissan driven by Deanna Marie Soto in Fullerton.

A Huntington Beach woman's release from jail without charges after her drunken-driving arrest that followed a crash that killed a 29-year-old Carson man in Fullerton has angered his friends and family, but police and prosecutors claim Deanna Marie Soto is not off the hook yet.

Soto, a 39-year-old medical assistant, was making a left turn at West Walnut Avenue and South Lemon Street just after 1:50 a.m. on June 21 when her Nissan Sentra collided with the Harley Davidson ridden by Robert Lavender III, whose nickname was "Chance."

He was pronounced dead at the scene, and she was later arrested by Fullerton Police on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony driving under the influence and booked into Orange County Jail in lieu of a $100,000 bond.

Instead of filing charges, the Orange County District Attorney's office kicked the case back to Fullerton Police.

"That case was submitted to us, and we have requested further investigation at this time," explained Farrah Emami, the OCDA spokeswoman.

Fullerton Police Sgt. Jeff Stuart, that department's spokesman, said, "It's actually quite common on major cases that the DA's office will decline charges, pending further investigation. It has nothing to do with the merits of the case."

However, conducting further investigation takes time, and a defendant must be arraigned within 72 hours of being arrested; once arraigned, they have the right to a preliminary hearing within 10 days and the right to a speedy trial.

"Since many of the tests take much longer to get results--blood toxicology typically can take six weeks or more--those results would not be available for the preliminary hearing," Stuart observed. "For this reason, it is not uncommon for the DA to 'kick' the case back for further investigation."

At least one of Lavender's friends posted this on Instagram after Soto's disappearance from the Orange County Jail database:

At least one friend of dead motorcyclist is livid.

Of course, Soto is innocent until proven guilty.

Meanwhile, a loved one of "Chance" posted the following on to raise money for funeral expenses:
R.I.P., Chance

Kudos for reaching the goal.

Email: Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!

My Voice Nation Help
fishingblues topcommenter

Deanna Marie Soto  ---- Cute kid, but her tits are too big.  Throw the book at her.


Everyone automatically assumes she was intoxicated. Has there been a Toxicology report released? Is there an accident report stating she was in fact at fault? No! We all understand loss but until the verdict she is innocent until proven guilty. Its unfortunate how thoughtless and blind people become during times like this not realizing the damage they are creating with their slanderous words. This woman may have a family, a job..... One life has already been taken to early and until facts are shown I don't believe any of us have the right to try and take hers.


She flashed her hooters to get out of jail?  No guy would EVER be released from jail after a DUI homicide. #fightfemaleprivilege


Oh and did I mention she's married to a cop??!! That's a fact!!! All cops are bastards!!! Acab!!


@c20thcenturyfoxx Maybe its because she has prior DUI convictions?!!! I dont care if she had under the legal limit in her system and drove..she should be living a completely sober life! Alcohol is OBVIOUSLY a problem for this woman.


@c20thcenturyfoxx She was arrested for felony DUI and vehicular manslaughter, this has said in multiple articles citing/quoting police statements. She was making a left without an arrow and he was going straight, it was her fault. Go look at the intersection and crash site. She made the decision to drink and drive and she killed someone because of that decision. She took a son, fiancé, and friend who was the most authentic and real person I've ever known...he lived his life to the fullest and accomplished more in his short time here than most ppl do in their entire life. I feel bad for her family that they have to suffer because of her irresponsibility, but it's nothing compared to what Chance's loved ones are/will be going through


The toxicology reports take six weeks u fuckin cock sucker!!! That bitch murdered my friend!!!! My friend was completly against drunk driving !!! Shut your fuckin mouth and have some respect!!! If that was your friends or family your comments would be different!! Fuck you and that murdering snake bitch!!! Probably suckin a dick in the back of a bar!!!

fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter


Why don't you focus your rage on what's the fact that she drove drunk and killed somebody?


@fishwithoutbicycle Because, love, the article is about her inappropriate release from jail, not the original crime itself.  Furthermore the release smacks of unequal treatment in the CJ system.  Women perps are consistently let off easier, especially hawt ones or ones who cry at the right time.

Please be on time for band practice, xoxo

fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter

@downtownbrown @fishwithoutbicycle 

Lots of people are walking around free who should be in jail. I understand being angry about THAT. But you just had to throw in that garbage about "female privilege" and how "hawt" chicks get away with everything, didn't you darlin'?

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