Nurse accused in deadly Windsor Hills crash facing 6 counts of murder, Gascón says

KABC logo
Tuesday, August 9, 2022
EMBED <>More Videos

A nurse who was allegedly driving 90 mph when she ran a red light and slammed into traffic in Windsor Hills, killing six people, is being charged with murder, the DA said Monday.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A nurse who was allegedly driving 90 mph when she ran a red light and slammed into traffic in Windsor Hills, killing six people, is being charged with murder and could face a 90-year sentence, Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascón said Monday.

Nicole Linton, 37, has been charged with six counts of murder and five counts of gross vehicular manslaughter, Gascón said.

If convicted of all charges, she faces a potential sentence of 90 years to life in prison.

Linton was hospitalized after the crash, but was booked into jail over the weekend. She was initially being held on $2 million bail but that amount was increased to $9 million.

At Linton's first court appearance Monday, a judge ordered her held without bail, but a hearing will be held next Monday to review bail.

Authorities say Linton was speeding in a Mercedes when she ran a red light at the intersection of La Brea and Slauson avenues on Thursday. She slammed into multiple vehicles, and three of them were engulfed by flames.

Linton is a traveling nurse from Houston who was working in the Los Angeles area. Police are looking into whether drugs or alcohol played a role in the crash.

On Monday, Gascón said so far police have not developed evidence of alcohol use but they are continuing to investigate.

RELATED: Woman was heading to prenatal checkup with infant son, boyfriend before deadly Windsor Hills crash

During Monday's bail hearing, Linton's defense attorney claimed there was no evidence of drugs or alcohol in her system and alluded to "profound mental health issues" as a potential reason behind the crash.

A prosecutor said she had been involved in "a number of prior collisions throughout the United States" including a 2020 crash in which two vehicles were totaled and people were injured.

Among the dead from the Windsor Hills crash were Asherey Ryan, who was more than eight months pregnant, along with her boyfriend Reynold Lester and their unborn baby, named Armani Lester.

Asherey's 11-month old son Alonzo Quintero was also killed. They were heading to a prenatal doctor's appointment at the time of the crash.

"A young family was destroyed in the blink of an eye," Gascón said.

Gascón said the six murder charges include Asherey's unborn child, but the charge of manslaughter legally cannot apply.

The father of Alonzo Quintero told Eyewitness News he wants to see justice for his son.

"The smile. He had a smile that would brighten up your day, no matter what," Luis Quintero said, fighting back tears. "He was full of joy, very excited. I loved when he gripped his hands. When he would kick his legs from excitement."

"I want to see that justice is made. Something for her, payback for what she's done. Maybe then I can forgive her. But not now. She took my son away from me. And I will never see him."

After hitting Asherey and Reynold's car, Linton's Mercedes then collided with a Nissan Altima and killed two women inside, who have not been publicly identified.

She also careened into an SUV carrying a family of seven. They all incurred minor injuries. Several other vehicles were also struck.

Family members and community members gathered at the intersection Sunday to remember the lives lost.

"She was such a beautiful lady," said Jean Martin of Windsor Hills, who attended the vigil. "You know she was a good mom. To her family, be sure to take the life and time you had and cherish that."

A growing memorial of flowers, photos and candles was placed at the intersection in memory of the victims.

Family members and community activists also called for safety improvements at the intersection, which they say has seen other serious crashes.

A GoFundMe has been set up to help Asherey's family with funeral expenses.