Man charged with homicide in crash

By JUSTIN GEORGE, Times Staff Writer
Published January 9, 2008

TOWN 'N COUNTRY - Hillsborough County sheriff's officials charged 26-year-old Yorgan Lopez-Perez with vehicular homicide and two counts of reckless driving with serious injury on Tuesday, saying he drove 91 mph before his car crashed into a car, killing a woman.

Caressa C. Gordon, 26, was driving her 1997 Nissan west on Fountain Avenue when she attempted to turn south on Sheldon Road. Lopez-Perez's Chevy Cobalt was headed north on Sheldon Road, and the Nissan drove into his car's path at the intersection.

The front of Lopez-Perez's car struck the left front of Gordon's.

She was airlifted to St. Joseph's Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. Her passengers, Marjory E. Devlin, 20, of Tampa, and Devlin's 1-year-old child, Isaiah Casanova, were ejected in the crash. Both sustained injuries that were not life-threatening.

Lopez-Perez was not taken to the hospital. He admitted to driving his car at about 80 mph, sheriff's officials said. The posted speed limit was 45 mph, and data downloaded from Lopez-Perez's car showed his car hit a top speed of 91 mph before the crash, the Sheriff's Office said.

"The actions of the defendant show a willful and wanton disregard for the safety of persons and property," sheriff's spokeswoman Debbie Carter said in a statement.