Trial starts today for woman accused of DUI crash that killed 3 Las Vegas teens

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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The trial for a woman charged with killing three local teenagers in a fiery car crash last year will start Monday in California. The teens were on spring break when police say Bani Duarte was speeding and crashed into their car.

8 News Now has learned some family members of the Centennial High School students killed in the crash will be in Orange County to watch the trial.

This is the vehicle the teens were in when Bani Duarte rear-ended their car at a stoplight.

Prosecutors say Duarte, 28, killed three Centennial High School students and injured a fourth during their spring break in Huntington Beach in March 2018. She’s accused of driving 79 miles-per-hour when her car slammed into the back of their vehicle, which was stopped at a red light. A toxicology report shows Duarte’s blood alcohol content was .28, more than threes times the legal limit.

Last year, one of the victim’s father talked with 8 News Now about the tragedy.

“Every day is tough. Every day you want to cry and probably do cry. I have two other daughters. I know the other families have other children and we all must move on. But, it’s not easy. We definitely, you struggle every day because you had plans and they’re gone,” said Aaron Hawley, victim’s father.

Dylan Mack, 18, Brooke Hawley, 17, and Albert “J” Rossi, 17, were killed in the crash.

Duarte was charged with three counts of murder and one count of driving under the influence causing injury. She pleaded not guilty to all of the charges.

Over the past year, students and teachers at Centennial High have been mourning the deaths of the three teens and holding fundraisers.

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