Manslaughter suspect arrested again
April 18, 2011
The man accused of killing two tourists in Pismo Beach last October during an alleged botched suicide attempt is back in jail.
A San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s deputy arrested Jerardo Iriarte, 20, on Sunday morning on the 2000 block of Laguna Negra in Arroyo Grande for allegedly being under the influence of a controlled substance. The Sheriff’s Department said they were alerted by a caller that had reported a person “acting strangely.”
The Oceano man was out on $50,000 bail for the double killing of 63-year-old Bruce Mallin and his 59-year-old wife Marjorie Mallin who were avid travelers visiting the Central Coast from Washington State and walking near the Marie Callender’s restaurant on Price Street when they were struck by the car he was driving.
This latest charge adds to a series of legal challenges for the Oceano man. Iriarte pleaded not guilty to two counts of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and legal enhancements of causing great bodily injury during the commission of a felony.
Police believe Iriarte, then 19 years old, did not intend to kill the couple, rather harm himself when he recklessly launched a car off the freeway.
Shortly before their deaths, Iriarte had been in Marie Callender’s arguing with a former girlfriend who refused to see him anymore. Witnessed reported that the man was clearly angry as he left the restaurant and took off in his car.
Moments later, Iriarte drove southbound on Highway 101 at a high speed, steered the black Toyota Corolla towards the restaurant and drove through the chain link fence that separated the highway from Price Street. His car continued traveling south on Price Street where it struck Mallin and his wife.
Iriarte survived the apparent suicide attempt, but was hospitalized with moderate injuries before being taken to jail.
The Sheriff’s Department said Iriarte is being held without bail this time.