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Central Coast man facing life sentence after being convicted of head-on DUI crash which killed teen

Bill Oxford

Man drove wrong way on Highway 101

A Central Coast man has been convicted of murder, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, and hit and run causing death stemming from a head-on collision on Highway 101.

CHP investigators say it happened in March of 2021, when Earnesto Nava Herrera was driving northbound on the southbound 101 in the Nipomo area. He smashed head-on into another car, killing a 14-year-old teenager, and seriously injuring two others in the vehicle.

The 27-year-old man then fled the scene on foot. He was found and arrested.

The fatal crash came just three months after Herrera had been arrested on another DUI charge. San Luis Obispo County prosecutors say after being convicted during a jury trial this week, he faces the possibility of life in prison when he’s sentenced in March.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.