Arraignment delayed for driver in crash near Harbor High

SANTA ANA — An allegedly intoxicated driver who hit and seriously injured a Newport Harbor High School student was charged Thursday with felony driving under the influence with an enhancement for causing brain injury and paralysis.

Marnie J. Lippincott, 38, of Costa Mesa was also charged with a misdemeanor count of driving with a suspended license. Her arraignment in Orange County Superior Court was delayed Thursday until later this month.

Prosecutors said Lippincott was under the influence of drugs and alcohol Tuesday afternoon when her black Chevy Tahoe hit Crystal Morales, 17, as she crossed Margaret Drive in a crosswalk near of the school, which had just let out for the day.

Morales suffered serious internal and head injuries. She remained in a medically induced coma Thursday in intensive care in Western Medical Center in Santa Ana.

Lippincott, who stayed at the scene after the crash, was arrested after failing a field sobriety test given by police, prosecutors said.

Court records show in 2005 Lippincott pleaded guilty to theft, burglary and obtaining prescription drugs by fraud. She also has two previous traffic violations, including speeding.

Her defense attorney, a public defender, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Lippincott remains in custody in lieu of $100,000 bail. She is scheduled to be arraigned Dec. 21 in the Orange County Jail's courtroom, CJ-1. She faces up to eight years in prison if convicted.

— Mike Reicher also contributed to this report

Twitter: @JosephSerna

Copyright © 2019, Daily Pilot
EDITION: California | U.S. & World