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Illegal alien charged in drunken fatal car crash that killed NFL player

Manuel Orrego-Savala (Indiana State Police)
February 07, 2018

A Guatemalan immigrant accused of killing an NFL player and an Uber driver in a drunk driving crash in Indiana has been charged with four felony counts related to the crash.

Manuel Orrego-Savala, 37, was arrested early Sunday morning after driving his pick-up truck while drunk and killing NFL linebacker Edwin Jackson and ride-sharing operator Jeffrey Monroe.

Orrego-Savala gave an alias at the scene – Alex Cabrera Gonsales – before attempting to flee on foot.

Orrego-Savala was deported from the U.S. in 2007 and 2009 and was currently living in the U.S. illegally. He is scheduled for an initial hearing in Marion County Circuit Court on Wednesday.

In Tuesday’s federal criminal complaint, he was charged with illegal re-entry of a previously deported alien.

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The judge set his bond at $200,000 after entering a not guilty plea on his behalf, and charged him with four felonies. Orrego-Savala was charged with two counts of each felony: leaving the scene of an accident and causing death while driving intoxicated.

Appearing before a judge on Tuesday, Orrego-Savala said: “I don’t know why I’m here,” claiming that he wasn’t the one driving the car in the crash despite police saying he had a blood alcohol content level that was three times the legal limit.

Orrego-Savala had a 2005 conviction for driving under the influence in Redwood City, California.

“I was very saddened to hear of the passing of Indianapolis [Colts] linebacker Edwin Jackson,” Vice President Mike Pence tweeted Monday night. “This is a great loss for the entire Indiana community. My prayers are with his family in their time of grief.”

Mike Pence (Twitter)

President Donald Trump tweeted about Jackson’s death, giving his prayers and best wishes to the Jackson family. Trump also called for Democrats to be tougher on illegal immigration.

“So disgraceful that a person illegally in our country killed [Colts] linebacker Edwin Jackson. This is just one of many such preventable tragedies. We must get the Dems to get tough on the Border, and with illegal immigration, FAST,” Trump tweeted.

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Donald J. Trump (Twitter)

“My prayers and best wishes are with the family of Edwin Jackson, a wonderful young man whose life was so senselessly taken,” Trump tweeted.

Donald J. Trump (Twitter)

Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry criticized President Trump and others for politicizing the fatal crash.

“We will vigorously prosecute this matter, just like any comparable crime, not because of the immigration status of an accused, but because two innocent men lost their lives in this horrible incident,” Curry said.

“We are disheartened that ghoulish and inappropriate public commentary has politicized this tragedy. Much of such commentary, including tweets by the President, fails to acknowledge that both Edwin Jackson and Jeffrey Monroe lost their lives on Sunday,” he said. “We will simply seek justice on behalf of the families of those two victims.”