Fatal South L.A. Crash: Suspect Officially Charged with Vehicular Manslaughter in 3 Passenger Deaths

Tragedy struck in the heart of South Los Angeles when a fatal crash claimed the lives of three Uber passengers. The three victims were identified as Juvelyn Arroyo, 23, Veronica Amezola, 23, and Kimberly Izquierdo, 27. Two of the three were sisters. The incident has brought to light to the harsh consequences of reckless driving.  The suspect, 31-year-old Gregory Black, is facing three counts of vehicular manslaughter. He pleaded not guilty at his arraignment at the Compton Courthouse on Tuesday, August 29th, and is due back in court next week.

The Horrific Crash

The incident unfolded at the intersection of Vermont Avenue and Century Boulevard. On August 26th, around 5:30 a.m. A speeding Mercedes-Benz crashed into an Uber vehicle, leaving three passengers dead. The driver and another passenger where hospitalized. The collision was so severe that the aftermath resembled that of a bomb explosion, according to LAPD Detective Ryan Moreno.

Criminal History and Charges

The suspect behind the wheel, 31-year old Gregory Black, has a deeply concerning criminal history. At the time of the crash, he was on probation for attempted murder, shedding light on his propensity for violence. Black’s past included 11 felony bookings and three convictions.  He was a “well-known local gang member”.  This lead to him having accumulated two criminal “strikes,” one of which was a “super strike.” According to the district attorney’s office.

Understanding California’s Three Strikes Law

California’s “Three Strikes” law is designed to impose harsher penalties on individuals with multiple serious felony convictions. In Black’s case, having accumulated two criminal strikes implies that his punishment could be significantly amplified under the state’s sentencing guidelines. A “super strike” signifies that one of his previous convictions falls under a particularly severe category, making him subject to even more serious consequences.

Gregory Black Charged With Vehicular Manslaughter and Penal Code 192(c) PC

Penal Code 192. Manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being without malice.

(c) Vehicular—

(1) Except as provided in subdivision (a) of Section 191.5, driving a vehicle in the commission of an unlawful act, not amounting to a felony, and with gross negligence; or driving a vehicle in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death, in an unlawful manner, and with gross negligence.

(2) Driving a vehicle in the commission of an unlawful act, not amounting to a felony, but without gross negligence; or driving a vehicle in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death, in an unlawful manner, but without gross negligence.

(3) Driving a vehicle in connection with a violation of paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 550, where the vehicular collision or vehicular accident was knowingly caused for financial gain and proximately resulted in the death of any person. This paragraph does not prevent prosecution of a defendant for the crime of murder.

Vehicular manslaughter, as defined under Penal Code 192(c) PC. involves causing the death of another person while driving a vehicle unlawfully, but without gross negligence. In this case, Black’s alleged actions of reaching speeds of up to 100 mph in a 35-mph zone and running a red light constitute unlawful driving behavior. His reckless actions resulted in the tragic deaths of three innocent individuals, making him liable for vehicular manslaughter charges.

The Importance of Criminal Strikes

In California, accumulating criminal strikes has profound legal implications.  A first strike results in a doubled sentence for the current conviction. A second strike leads to a sentence that is twice as long as the ordinary term. However, a third strike triggers a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years to life in prison, regardless of the nature of the third offense. Black’s “super strike” makes his situation even more dire, potentially subjecting him to a longer sentence than typical “Three Strikes” cases.


The devastating incident that unfolded in South Los Angeles serves as a grim reminder of the potential consequences of reckless driving. In the midst of this tragedy, let us remember  and extend our thoughts to their grieving families.  Gregory Black’s alleged actions have not only resulted in the loss of innocent lives but have also exposed him to severe legal penalties under California’s “Three Strikes” law and the charges of vehicular manslaughter. As the legal proceedings unfold, this case underscores the importance of adhering to traffic laws and the potential gravity of the legal consequences for those who choose to disregard them. 

Should you ever find yourself in the unfortunate circumstance of being charged with vehicular manslaughter, at the Law Offices of Arash Hashemi we are here to help. To schedule a consultation about your case, please contact us at (310) 448-1529 or contact us online.

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