credit: KTLA

Preliminary hearing begins for local woman charged with murder in wrong way crash

A preliminary hearing got underway Wednesday for a local woman facing multiple criminal charges, including murder, in connection with a fatal wrong-way traffic collision in January 2018.

Nicole Danielle Thibault, 28, appeared in Los Angeles County Superior Court for the beginning of her preliminary hearing, Ricardo Santiago, spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, said Wednesday.

During the hearing, prosecutors will present evidence in the case, and the defense can respond; the judge can then decide if the case should go to trial.

Thibault, who underwent a court-ordered mental competency assessment in September, was found mentally competent in December.

Criminal proceedings against her had been suspended while her mental health was being assessed.

Thibault was arrested on Jan. 31, 2018, after having recovered in a hospital for more than a week after the fatal crash on Jan. 22, 2018.

She is charged with murder, attempted murder and assault connected to allegations that she stole a pickup truck and crashed it on the 210 freeway, killing Fontana resident Daniel Castillo and injuring others.

In April 2018, Thibault entered a plea of not guilty to 14 felony counts in relation to the wrong-way crash.

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