Pittsburg, California – Pittsburg police officials made a significant breakthrough on Wednesday by apprehending a couple allegedly responsible for a tragic hit-and-run incident that claimed the life of a 17-year-old pedestrian at the beginning of March. Roberto Sainez, 34, of Pittsburg, and his fiancé, Vanessa Landeros, 30, were both taken into custody by law enforcement authorities.
According to authorities, the collision occurred on March 7 at Stoneman Avenue and Briarcliffe Drive. The victim, Brooke Jeffrey, an 11th grade dance student at Golden Gate Community School, was killed at the site, right in front of the school. The tragedy prompted widespread outrage in the community.
The couple was apprehended by the police on the 3000 block of Gladstone Drive, where investigators were executing a search warrant. Police relied on footage from hours of video surveillance to identify the suspects as well as the vehicle involved in the crime. The probe also involved executing multiple search warrants, including at two Pittsburg homes, a Pittsburg business, and a Sonoma County property, which resulted in the recovery of the vehicle used in the crash.
Sainez has been booked on multiple charges, including vehicular manslaughter, destroying or concealing evidence, felony hit-and-run, hit-and-run resulting in death, driving with a suspended license for DUI, driving on a suspended or revoked license and causing bodily injury, and driving on a suspended license due to DUI. Meanwhile, Landeros has been booked and charged with being an accessory after the fact, as well as with destroying or concealing evidence.
Brooke’s mother, Paula Jeffrey, has voiced her concerns over the intersection, citing that it is a dangerous location where traffic lights don’t work, drivers often speed, and it is difficult to see in the dark. Paula and friends have been remembering Brooke, a gifted dancer and cook, who lost her life too soon. Despite the tragedy, Paula understands that the incident could have been an accident.