HOUSTON – Three people have been accused of providing alcohol to a minor who was charged in connection with a crash that killed a mother and her baby, prosecutors announced Thursday.
Veronica Rivas, 20, was indicted on two counts of intoxication manslaughter in connection with the Feb. 28 crash on the Gulf Freeway feeder road at El Dorado Boulevard that killed Shayla Joseph, 36, and her 3-month-old son.
Harris County prosecutors said that an investigation by a new roadway safety task force resulted in additional charges being filed against three people.
“The charges today, I hope that they instill fear in every single person’s heart that serves alcohol. I hope that this causes people to be more responsible,” said prosecutor Sean Teare.
Prosecutors said that prior to the crash, Rivas and her friend were given tequila at the Crescent City Connection Sports and Oyster Bar on El Camino Real.
The son of the bar’s owner, identified as Devin Jackson, 24, and John Medina, 23, are each charged with knowingly purchasing and providing alcohol to a minor, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors said Medina was also charged with aggravated perjury after he lied to a grand jury.
Amy Allen, 40, a bartender at the establishment, is charged with criminal negligence. Prosecutors said she permitted Rivas and her friend to drink alcohol and did not check their identification.
A 2013 mugshot of Allen from the Texas Department of Public Safety is below.
Investigators said Rivas had a blood alcohol content level of .21 at the time of the crash – nearly three times the legal limit.
Prosecutors said Rivas was driving 90 mph when she slammed into Joseph's car.
They also said Rivas and her friend had been to two other bars the same day that they’re now investigating, as well.
If convicted, Rivas faces up to 40 years in prison.
Jackson faces up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine, if convicted.
Medina faces up to 10 years in prison and a $4,000 fine, if convicted.
Prosecutors said the case was not closed and the bar could face penalties.