Tragic Loss: DUI Suspect Charged with Murder of 14-Year-Old at Newport Beach


Tragedy at Balboa Beach: DUI Suspect Accused of Killing Teenage Girl

A heartbreaking incident has cast a shadow over Balboa Beach as 14-year-old Rosenda Elizabeth Smiley lost her life in a tragic collision. The suspect, 30-year-old Joseph Alcazar of Fontana, stands charged with murder after driving under the influence and claiming Rosenda’s life.

A Nightmarish Sequence

The tragic events unfolded on a fateful Saturday evening near Balboa Boulevard and Palm Street. As Rosenda and two companions crossed the street, an oncoming car halted to allow them a safe passage. However, Alcazar recklessly bypassed the stationary vehicle and proceeded through the intersection.

In a cruel twist of fate, Alcazar’s vehicle struck Rosenda as she walked. Tragically, she succumbed to her injuries at the scene.

A History of Impairment

The heartbreaking loss of Rosenda is particularly poignant given Alcazar’s history of alcohol-impaired driving. He had previously been convicted twice for DUI, one instance involving a crash that left him severely injured.

Alcazar’s irresponsibility extended beyond his own actions, as his young daughter and another man were also present in the vehicle at the time of the deadly crash. Compounding his recklessness, Alcazar’s blood alcohol level was found to be double the legal limit.

Grieving Family, Infuriated Community

“A young life, full of promise, was snuffed out by the selfish and reckless actions of an individual who had no regard for the safety of others,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. “The family of Rosenda Smiley faces a lifetime of mourning while the accused faces justice for taking an innocent life without a second thought.”

Justice to Be Served

Alcazar’s charges reflect the gravity of his actions:

  • Murder
  • Felony DUI Causing Great Bodily Injury with Two Prior Convictions
  • Felony DUI with BAC of .08 or Higher with Two Prior Convictions
  • Child Endangerment

If found guilty on all counts, Alcazar could face up to life in prison.

A Plea for Accountability

The loss of Rosenda has left an irreplaceable void in the lives of her family and community. While justice may eventually be served, it cannot bring back the young girl whose life was tragically cut short.

This tragedy serves as a sobering reminder of the devastating consequences of impaired driving. As we mourn the loss of Rosenda, let us demand accountability from those who place others at risk through their reckless behavior.