Man Faces Life Without Parole for Crash That Killed Mother, Two Kids

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CLEBURNE — It was a wrong-way crash that killed a mother and two young children. Now, the man accused of causing that crash is on trial for murder in Johnson County.

“The defendant keeps going. Even though there are two signs that say ‘wrong way, turn around,’ he goes right through those signs,” prosecutor Matt Smid said.

“Mr. Martinez comes up the hill and they arrive at the crest of the hill at the same time and just like that, bang! An explosive, devastating and deadly crash.”

That crash killed Miranda Abshire and her sons, Cruz, 2 and Adrian, 5.

In Texas, a driver is legally drunk with a blood-alcohol level of .08.  The night Ricardo Martinez was arrested, cops said his alcohol level was three times the legal limit. They say he blew a 0.24.

And this wasn’t the first time cops say Martinez was drunk behind the wheel. He’s been convicted of DWI twice.

The crash devastated Abshire’s family. The prosecutor put her grandfather on the stand to ID the victims in photos.

“That’s her–,” Eldon Abshire said, pausing to fight back tears. “That’s her two sons.”

Jurors also heard from the one person inside Abshire’s car who survived the crash, her 13-year-old half-sister.

“We were just sitting there and I was crying,” Lindsey Reynolds said.” Miranda was over the airbag she wasn’t moving and I didn’t hear anything.”

Tuesday morning, the defense did not make an opening statement.

If Martinez is convicted, he could be sentenced to life without parole. But a family is already facing life — life without Miranda, Adrian and Cruz.