Judge reduces bond for Holland mom in crash that killed her three kids
Josiah, Jerome and Jeremiah Gonzales died Thursday, February 17, after a devastating rollover accident in Holland Township.
HOLLAND - A Dutch mother accused of operating while drunk and causing the crash that killed her three children appeared in court on Friday and won a reduction of her bail.
Leticia Marie Gonzales, 30, was scheduled for a preliminary inquest, a hearing where the prosecutor will call witnesses in the case and a judge will determine if there is enough evidence to prosecute for the case to proceed.
More: Police: Dutch mother charged with drunk driving in triple fatal accident
More: Inquiry into February triple fatal accident underway, police mum on toxicology findings
However, attorneys for Gonzales and the Ottawa District Attorney's Office agreed to delay the hearing by 60 days to give both sides more time to work out their case.
Prosecutors allege Gonzales abused the prescription drug methadone to treat opioid addiction by taking a prescribed dose at a clinic that day, but later took a second non-prescribed dose, which she took hours before the crash, which happened on April 17. February 2022, received from another source.
The Ottawa County Courthouse Monday, April 18, 2022, in downtown Grand Haven.
Gonzales, riding in the vehicle with three children under the age of 5, was traveling west on James Street and drifted onto the wrong side of the street via the center lane before hitting the curb and rolling the vehicle into an icy water-filled ditch. The three children died after being submerged under water for 10 to 17 minutes.
A five-month investigation by detectives from the Ottawa County Sheriff's Office led to the charges and the arrest.
The defense team assigned to Gonzales from the Ottawa County Public Defender's Office may choose to challenge the drug-detection expert prosecutors intend to use at the preliminary hearing, according to discussions before the judge in court Friday.
The Ottawa County Sheriff's Office
Judge Bradley Knoll also agreed to reduce Gonzales' bail by 10 percent from $250,000 to $100,000 in cash after her defense attorney pleaded guilty to Gonzales' poor physical and mental health. Gonzales would have to pay $10,000 to get out of prison.
If released, Gonzales, who her attorney says is suffering from kidney and heart failure, would be subject to stringent conditions from Knoll. She would have to wear a GPS tether, she wouldn't be allowed to go outside a 10 mile radius of the house, she wouldn't have contact with her other children, she wouldn't be allowed to use methadone or any illegal substance, and she would not be allowed to drive a vehicle.
Gonzales is charged with three counts of driving a vehicle while intoxicated, causing the deaths. The charges against Gonzales are felonies and carry a prison sentence of up to 15 years.
— Contact reporter Carolyn Muyskens at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter at @cjmuyskens.
This article originally appeared on The Holland Sentinel: Holland's mother charged in triple fatal accident gets bail reduced
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