Mother charged with DUI following wreck that injured 6-year-old daughter

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TEMPE, Ariz. – A Valley mother has been charged with aggravated DUI following a crash that injured her and her 6-year-old daughter, the Department of Public Safety said Saturday evening.

Lilliana Torres and her her young daughter were rushed to the hospital after the late-night crash.  Torres is also facing aggravated assault for the injuries she and her daughter suffered.

The wreck happened at about 11 p.m. Friday on the eastbound Loop 202 Red Mountain Freeway ramp to the southbound Loop 101 in Tempe.

According to DPS, two cars collided. The one carrying Torres and her 6-year-old daughter rolled down the side of the embankment, coming to rest on its roof.

The little girl’s injuries reportedly were relatively minor; Torres suffered serious injuries. Both were taken to Maricopa County Medical Center and are expected to recover.

The people in the other car were not injured.

DPS said the crash is a harsh reminder of the dangers of drinking and driving.

“We just want to remind drivers that if you’re going to drink …, find an alternate route home, designate a driver, or just plan to stay put,” said Sgt. Thomas Neve of the Department of Public Safety.

Neve advised those who are out and about this weekend to be extra vigilant when they’re behind the wheel, particularly at night. “Crashes go way up at night. We know there are a lot more impaired drivers at night,” he explained.

But the danger that drunk drivers present isn’t only at night. It’s all the time. That’s especially true during a holiday weekend.

“It’s a busy holiday weekend. … People who stay in town do barbecues and celebrations. There are a lot of events going on around town. Obviously alcohol is sometimes a big part of that,” Neve said.

“Be careful. Be watchful of what’s going on around you …,” he said. “If you see something that looks out of place – you’ve got somebody driving without headlights, somebody’s weaving in their lane … -- call 911 and let us know so we can try to get those drivers off the road before an accident does occur.”

According to DPS, nine people died in crashes across Arizona during the Memorial Day weekend last year. The year before that, seven people were killed, and in 2008, 17 died in Memorial Day crashes.