Manslaughter suspect spends week in court

Law enforcement personnel examine a vehicle involved in a fiery crash on Interstate 5 that killed six people. Photo courtesy of Rick McClure

A man accused of six counts of manslaughter spent the past week in a courtroom, with Friday being the final day he’ll stand in front of a jury for the week.

Richard Lopez, 72, has been charged with six counts of misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter after he was suspected of killing two women and four young children after his big rig hit a minivan two and a half years ago.

In March of last year, after a two-month trial at the San Fernando courthouse, the case ended with a hung jury and a mistrial was declared.

In April, the judge turned down a request by Lopez’s lawyer to have the case dismissed.

Both the prosecution and defense spent this past week in front of a jury after delivering their opening statements earlier this week.

Lopez is set to once again appear in front of a jury in San Fernando on Friday for the jury trial to continue, according to Ricardo Santiago, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office. 

Lopez is accused of having struck a minivan with his Freightliner truck at 3:37 a.m. on June 28, 2016, in the southbound lanes of Interstate 5, just south of Gorman School Road.

The two women who died inside the burning 2016 Toyota Sienna minivan were Connie Wu Li and Flora Kuang, both 33. The children killed in the same vehicle were Jayden Li, 5; Lucas Li, 3; Sky Ng, 4; and Venus Ng, 2.

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