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Deadly Crash Case Delayed Because Of Another Crash

BRIGHTON, Colo. (CBS4) - Family members of the victims in a deadly crash in Thorton in February say they are willing to wait for justice to be served after a lead investigator in the case was critically injured in another crash.

Lawyers representing both sides in Monica Chavez's case asked for and were granted a continuation to her arraignment on Wednesday in an Adams County courtroom.

Chavez is charged with criminally negligent homicide for the deadly crash on Feb. 17 that killed the five members of the Stollsteimer family. She is accused of driving an SUV with her children inside that struck a median, struck a sedan, became airborne and landed on top of a truck.

Randy and Crystal Stollsteimer and their three boys were in the truck and were killed. On Wednesday their family members their relatives attended the hearing for Chavez.

The defense and prosecutors told a judge the delay in the court proceedings is necessary because of the injuries to police investigator Joe Dougherty. Dougherty was struck by an alleged drunk driver in September while he was on patrol on a motorcycle on Interstate 25. He remains on medical leave from his job.

RELATED STORY:Community Gathers To Support Injured Motorcycle Cop

Court documents state Chavez had been told by doctors not to drive after a seizure-like episode in 2006. Chavez was told to see a specialist but she said she couldn't afford it. Prosecutors claim Chavez ignored her doctor's orders.

"She shouldn't have been driving," Crystal's uncle Alejandro Adalco told CBS4.

Members of the victims family said that although Wednesday's court proceeding brought another delay, they will continue to come to court knowing the legal system can be slow, much like the healing process.

"Holidays come and you want to see those people. You want to reach out but you can't," said Adalco.

Chavez's mother, Gloria Barela, told CBS4 her daughter has a history of seizures.

"She does not remember anything," said Barela. "She's very devastated by the death of the family."

Chavez is due back in court Dec. 19.


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