Driver in Friday’s fatal crash faces DUI, manslaughter charges |

Driver in Friday’s fatal crash faces DUI, manslaughter charges

A woman who reportedly drove her Jeep Cherokee head-on into a much-smaller Ford Festiva, killing the 22-year-old driver Friday afternoon, will face several criminal charges including DUI vehicular manslaughter.

Cassandra E. Schley-May of Nevada City was killed in the crash, which involved four vehicles.

Kelli Townsend, 36, of Nevada City was taken into custody after the wreck. She was arrested on suspicion of DUI vehicular manslaughter, driving under the influence of alcohol causing bodily injury and willful harm to a child, all felonies.

Her bail was set at $150,000, and Wayne Brown Correctional Facility officers said she was no longer in custody this morning.

The crash on Highway 49, near Old Downieville Highway, left Schley-May dead and sent three others to Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital with minor to moderate injuries.

According to the California Highway Patrol, Townsend, heading south on Highway 49, drifted over the center line, striking Schley-May’s Fiesta. The force of the collision sent both vehicles spinning. Townsend then reportedly struck another vehicle, and was rear-ended by a fourth vehicle.

For the full story, see Monday’s The Union.

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