Palm Springs man convicted of murder in DUI hit-and-run

An 86-year-old man who killed one pedestrian and injured another while driving drunk in Palm Springs was convicted Wednesday of murder.

The Indio jury also convicted Palm Springs resident Leroy Silva of DUI causing bodily injury, DUI causing bodily injury with a blood-alcohol level of more than 0.08%, two counts of hit-and-run resulting in death or injury and sentence-enhancing allegations of causing great bodily injury.

The charges stemmed from the July 2019 death of Lemon Grove resident Connie Clark and the injuring of another woman. The women, both 67, were crossing a street when they were struck.

Riverside County Superior Court Judge Dale Wells set sentencing for Oct. 8. Silva is facing 23 years to life in state prison. Wells ordered Silva be held without bail at the John Benoit Detention Center in Indio.

Silva was originally charged with two counts each of hit-and-run and driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Prosecutors later amended the charges to include murder on Aug. 9, 2019, after Clark died from her injuries.

According to prosecutors, Silva hit the women while driving a black sedan about 7:50 p.m. July 27, 2019, while the pedestrians were crossing Calle Encilia outside the Agua Caliente Casino in Palm Springs.

Silva was arrested about 40 minutes later, roughly a mile from where the women were hit.

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