Sleeping California teen killed when SUV slams into her apartment

By Daniel S Levine,

A 16-year-old girl of Palmdale, Calif. was killed early Sunday morning when an alleged drunk driver slammed his SUV into her apartment building.

The suspect, Roberto Rodriguez, 20, was booked on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter, authorities told the Los Angeles Times. He was being held on $100,000 bail and police believe that he was drunk at the time of the crash. It happened at 3:50 a.m. Sunday morning, Deputy Collin Reddy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said.

According to NBC Los Angeles, friends and family gathered for a vigil Sunday night for the victim, Giselle Mendoza. She was a sophomore and Palmdale High School. She was pronounced dead at the scene and it is believed that she was killed on impact.

“Sincerely, I’m sorry. It wasn’t my intention. Just, I'm sorry,” Rodriguez told NBC LA after he was released Sunday night. He will be back in court on Tuesday and will also likely be charged with DUI.

“Me and my brother loved her so much,” Yadira Mendoza, the victim’s sister, told NBC LA. “She passed away and they couldn’t do nothing for her.”

Authorities said that half of the apartment complex had to be evacuated Sunday because of leaking fuel. Residents can return after the SUV is removed.



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