SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A man accused of killing a Salem, Oregon, couple while driving drunk was on his way back to jail following his arrest by deportation officers.
Eduardo De La Lima-Vargas, 39, was taken into custody by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents when he left the Marion County jail after posting bail Thursday. The Statesman Journal reports that Marion County prosecutors filed a motion to reconsider holding him without bail in order to prevent his removal from the United States so he can face prosecution for his alleged crimes here before being deported to Mexico.
According to ICE officials, De La Lima-Vargas is a citizen of Mexico residing illegally in the United States.
Marion County Judge David Leith ruled in the prosecutors’ favor, and on De La Lima-Vargas was en route to Salem from an ICE detention facility in The Dalles, Oregon.
De La Lima-Vargas was first arrested after midnight on Aug. 19 on manslaughter, DUI and reckless driving charges.
According to police, he was driving his truck pulling an occupied horse trailer on Mission Street near Interstate 5 when he ran a red light and hit a motorcycle carrying Logan Wilson, 34, and Jessica Wilson, 32.
The Wilsons, a married couple with several young children, later died at Salem Hospital.
Responding officers described Vargas as smelling strongly of alcohol and swaying on his feet while standing. Authorities said he failed a field sobriety test and his blood-alcohol content was at .10 percent two hours after the crash.
ICE officials said they are not associated with the criminal proceedings in Marion County and would transfer De La Lima-Vargas back into local custody if Marion County prosecutors filed the appropriate motion.
Shortly after prosecutors filed the motion, the judge ordered that De La Lima-Vargas be transported back to Marion County and held without bail until a new hearing.