On Tuesday, March 19, 2019, jurors heard opening statements in the case of a Costa Mesa man accused of speeding through an intersection in Irvine, killing a 2-year-old girl and her grandmother in a hit-and-run crash. Deputy district attorney, Whitney Bokosky, argued that Alec Scott Abraham recklessly raced another car in his Ford Mustang through a red light and broadsided a family in a Chevrolet Cruze headed home after an evening of shopping in Costa Mesa on June 10, 2015. Katherine Hampton, 54, died at the scene and her granddaughter, Kaydence, later died in the hospital. Abraham could face 30 years to life in prison if convicted of two counts of murder. “In no world in this an accident,” said Bokosky, “In no circumstances is it an accident to go 76 mph through a red light.”
Megan Hampton, Kaydence’s mother, led the prosecution’s list of witnesses, while crying on the stand, as she lookd at a photo of her own mother holding the 2-year-old. Hampton said the last thing she remembers before the collision was her mother asking whether Kaydence was asleep in the backseat. She turned around to see her daughter in her booster seat, looking out the window. Megan Hampton suffered a fractured jaw, while Nathaniel suffered a broken collarbone, according to prosecutors.
Defense attorney, Houman Fakhimi, acknowledged that the Hampton family’s pain will never go away. He stated, “Everything that I will put forward to you through the next week is not in any way meant to diminish what happened or minimize the two lives that were lost.” But he also challenged an eyewitness’ statement about seeing the car Abraham is accused of racing, adding that there were no skid marks, security camera footage, or other corroborating evidence.
Irvine police officer, Kevin Von Luft, the first office on the scene, testified that the Mustang’s airbag was deployed and drops of blood were spattered throughout the interior. Bystanders called him to the Cruze, where he found Megan Hampton crying in the front passenger seat. “Her eyes were open but she wasn’t responsive when I tried to communicate with her,” he said when describing Katherine Hampton. He said someone offered to let Abraham borrow a cellphone after the crash and then reportedly watched Abraham walk away toward a strawberry field. Investigators said they quickly identified Abraham as a suspect in the hit-and-run when they found four traffic citations with his name on them in the wrecked Mustang. Abraham was arrested at a Costa Mesa park the next day following the crash.
Bokosky closed the prosecution’s opening statement by playing a cellphone video that police said Abraham texted to friends in November, 2014. In the video, the Mustang’s engine revs as it’s driven and the speedometer hit 100 mph before the camera pans to Abraham’s face as he shouts, “Woo!” For more information regarding hit-and-runs, click here. For more information regarding reckless driving, click here.