High-Speed Street Race Tragedy Ends in 12-Year Sentence for Driver

bakersfield street racing wrongful death

BAKERSFIELD, CA (April 25, 2024)Priscilla Carbajal said in court that she has forgiven the man responsible for the street racing crash that killed her sister, Carmen Vidal, and another driver, Jose Beltran-Lopez.


This high-speed racing incident occurred in northwest Bakersfield shortly after midnight on November 19, 2021, leading to a tragic accident.


Vidal and Beltran-Lopez were in a Honda Civic racing an Infiniti G37 driven by 32-year-old Valencia, who later pleaded no contest to two counts of vehicular manslaughter while murder charges were dropped. The Honda clipped another vehicle and crashed into a traffic pole, resulting in fatal injuries for the drivers and serious injuries for a second passenger.


At the sentencing on Wednesday, where Valencia received a 12-year prison term, Carbajal addressed him directly, expressing her forgiveness and hope for his future remorse and rehabilitation. Despite Valencia’s initial denial of racing and leaving the scene, evidence including video footage on his phone supported the racing allegations.


This Bakersfield street racing wrongful death case has underscored the devastating consequences of street racing, and Carbajal’s forgiveness brings a human element to the tragedy, reminding all involved of the lasting impact of such fleeting moments of reckless behavior.

If you or someone you know has been impacted by a similar incident, it’s important to get legal help. Contact RTM Law Firm for support in handling vehicular accident cases in Bakersfield. Our experienced wrongful death attorneys will work with you to protect your rights and pursue the justice you deserve.




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