A Western Michigan woman, whose three sons drowned after her SUV crashed in an ice-covered lake last year, pleaded not guilty to several charges related to the crash.
Leticia Gonzalez’s no contest plea to three misdemeanor moving violations causing death and operating while intoxicated was accepted by an Ottawa County judge on Monday.
The woman from Holland is scheduled to be sentenced by the court on September 25. The guidelines for sentencing call for a prison term ranging between seven months and two years.
Ottawa County Police reported that Gonzales was driving a sport utility vehicle when, in February 2022, she drove off to the left of the road. She then jumped over a curb before rolling the SUV into an iced-over retention pond. Her three sons – Jerome III (4 years old), Jeremiah (3 years old) and Josiah (1 year old) – drowned in their child restraint seats.
Gonzales was able to escape with only minor injuries. The police allege she was impaired after taking two doses methadone. This medication is used to treat addiction as well as pain relief. She had taken this medication on the morning of her fatal accident.
In July 2022, Gonzales was charged with three counts for operating while intoxicated and causing death.
She retracted her earlier no-contest to a single judge of operating while drunk causing death, after the court said that he planned to sentence her to 4 years in prison.