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Man charged in Texas fatal crash won’t face death penalty

Posted at 10:06 AM, Jun 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-08 11:06:31-04

Prosecutors say they won’t seek the death penalty for a man accused of intentionally crashing his truck into a van in northeast Texas, killing two young boys.

Zachary Blaise Salazar, 21, is charged with two counts of capital murder for the Jan. 13 crash that killed 3-year-old James Crowley and 7-year-old Riley Burgess.

A probable cause affidavit alleges that Salazar intentionally crashed his truck into a van because he was angry with his girlfriend, the Texarkana Gazette reported. The two boys were passengers in the van.

Salazar has pleaded not guilty. At a court hearing Monday in Texarkana, Texas, First Assistant District Attorney Kelley Crisp said her office would not seek the death penalty, citing Salazar’s history of mental illness.

Salazar is being held in the Bowie County jail on $5 million bond. A pretrial hearing is set for July 1 in the case.