Impaired Driver Arrested Following Fatal Crash Which Killed Passenger

Published 2:49 pm Monday, December 26, 2022

Lafourche Parish – On December 25, 2022, shortly after 8:00 p.m., Troopers with Louisiana State Police Troop C responded to a single-vehicle fatal crash on Louisiana Highway 308 near Marcello Boulevard. The crash claimed the life of a passenger whose identity is being withheld pending notification to next of kin.

The preliminary investigation revealed a 2011 Mazda 3, driven by 49-year-old Francisco Lopez-Mendoza of Raceland, was traveling south on LA Hwy 308. While in a left curve, the Mazda traveled off the roadway to the right before striking a utility pole and overturning.

Although properly restrained, the passenger of the Mazda suffered fatal injuries and died at the scene. Lopez-Mendoza was also properly restrained, suffered moderate injuries, and was transported to a New Orleans area hospital for treatment.

While at the hospital, Troopers determined Lopez-Mendoza to be impaired and arrested him for Driving While Impaired, Vehicular Homicide, Careless Operation, and Driver Must Be Licensed. A toxicology sample was collected from Lopez-Mendoza and submitted for analysis. This crash remains under investigation.

Nearly half of the fatal crashes in Louisiana are caused by impaired drivers. Alcohol and other drugs affect your visual ability, fine motor skills, and reaction times. Drivers should have a plan for a safe ride home before consuming any alcohol and/or drugs because if you feel different, you drive differently

Troop C has investigated 47 fatal crashes resulting in 51 deaths in 2022.