Man pleads not guilty for role in 2019 crash that killed a pedestrian

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CHULA VISTA (CNS) – A suspected drugged driver who allegedly caused a chain reaction crash in Chula Vista last year that killed a 81-year-old pedestrian and injured a woman and two children pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and DUI causing injury.

Enrique Briseno, 50, is accused of crashing a work truck into a parked vehicle just after 1 p.m. on Sept. 30, 2019, on Fourth Avenue, near H Street.

The impact allegedly pushed the parked car into the street, striking Rene Argoud. The victim was taken to a hospital, where he later died.

An infant in the parked car and an 8-year-old child leaning into the vehicle suffered minor injuries. The parked car also struck another parked car, injuring a woman, before it was redirected into Argoud. Briseno’s truck overturned in a nearby driveway, but he was uninjured.

Deputy District Attorney Laura Evans alleged Briseno was seen speeding and driving erratically prior to the crash.

A blood draw revealed “a variety of CNS (central nervous system) depressants” in his system, according to the prosecutor.

Evans said Briseno was not arrested on the day of the crash, as “significant investigation” was needed thereafter, but the prosecutor said he has a history of driving impaired.

On the day after the crash, Evans said Briseno was arrested in Chula Vista for allegedly driving drunk. The prosecutor said he had a .27 percent blood alcohol content in the Oct. 1 incident. He’s been charged with DUI in that case, and has two DUI convictions from 2009 in Plumas County and 2013 in San Diego County, she said.

Briseno is being held on $200,000 bail and is due back in court Friday for a bail review hearing.

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