Loren LeBeau prelim hearing delayed in vehicular manslaughter case

The Fresno BeeJanuary 3, 2013 

A preliminary hearing was delayed Thursday for Loren LeBeau, the former high school basketball coach accused of vehicular manslaughter and drunken driving in the Fresno crash that killed 7-year-old Donovan Maldonado.

The former Central High School coach appeared in Fresno County Superior Court to confirm to a judge he is living up to promises of not drinking alcohol and of attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. LeBeau is on an alcohol monitor.

The preliminary hearing was postponed from next week to Feb. 7.

At Thursday's hearing, Jeff Hammerschmidt, LeBeau's attorney, told Judge Gregory Fain he could not be ready in time for the scheduled Jan. 10 preliminary hearing because of a death in the family.

LeBeau, 43, is charged in connection with a July 25 crash in northeast Fresno. He remains free on $256,000 bail.

LeBeau was allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol. In addition to fatally injuring Donovan, the crash injured Donovan's father, Jesse, and younger sister, Bella, as they bicycled across Shepherd Avenue on the Sugar Pine Trail.

The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6166 or mbenjamin@fresnobee.com.

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