NewsCovering Kern County


Alleged DUI driver connected to death of woman and her 5-year-old son bails out

Posted at 11:54 PM, Nov 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-28 20:43:02-05

UPDATE (Nov. 28, 7:30 a.m.): The man accused of driving under the influence and causing a deadly crash that killed a woman and her 5-year-old son is out of jail.

Daniel Mejia was arrested over the weekend following the death of 21-year-old Karla Mendoza and her 5-year-old son from Half Moon Bay.

According to the CHP, Mejia, 21, was driving under the influence at the time of the crash. 

Kern County Jail officials confirm Mejia, who was being held on $130,000 bail, posted bond on Monday at 5:35 p.m.


Family reached out to 23ABC and confirmed 21-year-old Karla Mendoza passed away Friday night after a car crash on southbound 99 near Taft Highway. Her five-year-old son also died on scene after the crash.

Officials said just after 3:15 p.m. on Friday Juan Garcia was driving his 2002 Jeep southbound on Highway 99, north of Highway 119 and slowed to a stop in the center median divider and turned on his hazard lights to change a flat tire. 

Twenty two-year-old Daniel Mejia was driving his car in the #1 lane at a high rate of speed and hit the Jeep from behind. As a result of the collision, the Jeep sustained major damage, and came to rest on its left side with occupants trapped inside.

The Jeep then caught fire. Other motorists were able to pull Karla and her two young children out of the car, but her five-year-old died on the scene. 

A GoFundMe sent by family identifies the five-year-old as Emiliano. 

Mejia was arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. He being held on $130,000 bail and is expected in a Kern County courtroom on Tuesday.