A preliminary hearing was held on Thursday in El Cajon, California, to determine if Andrew Bellatti would stand trial for a car crash he was involved in on January 22nd. The crash resulted in the death of a 50 year-old man and injuries to the man's passenger and to Bellatti's passenger.
Following the daylong hearing, Judge William McGrath ruled that Bellatti must stand trial on one count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and two counts of reckless driving causing serious injuries. In addition to the three felony counts, he is also charged with misdemeanor reckless driving charges from both the crash and another incident a week before, and two traffic infractions for speeding and making a wrong turn.
Based on the arguments made at the preliminary hearing, Bellatti will attempt to convince a jury that the crash was an accident and not caused by him acting recklessly. His attorneys argued the crash was caused by a combination of wet, slippery roads and Bellatti swerving to avoid another car that pulled out in front of him.
Bellatti, who turned 19 on Thursday, was ordered to return to court on September 2nd to schedule a trial date. He faces up to a maximum of seven and a half years in prison if convicted of all charges.