Woman pleads guilty to manslaughter in road rage crash that killed Navy sailor
CHULA VISTA, Calif. — A woman who ran over a motorcyclist during a fit of road rage in the South Bay pleaded guilty Tuesday to voluntary manslaughter.
Darla Renee Jackson, 27, faces a maximum of 11 years in prison when she is sentenced April 14, although a judge indicated the term could be less.
Jackson had faced a second-degree murder charge in the May 28, 2015, death of 39-year-old Zachary Buob, a U.S. Navy chief petty officer in special operations.
Deputy District Attorney Laura Evans previously told a judge that Jackson passed Buob in the fast lane of northbound Interstate 5 near E Street, swerved her car toward him several times — causing him to flinch — chased him across four lanes of traffic, then ran him down on state Route 54.
Jackson was five feet behind Buob and going 80 mph when traffic slowed and she plowed into him, the prosecutor said.
But defense attorney Stephen Cline said there was no intent to kill on Jackson’s part and said the entire road rage incident occurred in a “minute or two.”
California Highway Patrol Officer Brad Clinkscales testified a year ago that Jackson told him Buob passed her on northbound Interstate 5 in Chula Vista about 5:20 p.m., then slowed in front of her.
Jackson said Buob got on her right side, kicked her car, flipped her off, then sped across all lanes toward eastbound state Route 54, according to Clinkscales.
Jackson told the officer that she gave chase because she wanted to exchange insurance information with Buob and “wasn’t going to let him do that.”
Jackson said Buob accelerated to about 95 mph as he transitioned onto Route 54 and she tried to keep up.
She said traffic slowed and she tried to avoid hitting the back of Buob’s motorcycle, but she ran him over, pushing the motorcycle and its rider some 300 feet before it went down. Buob died at a hospital.