Driver in SJ Fatal Car Accident Charged with Murder

Prosecutors charged Dario Taylor of Pittsburg with murder

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office has charged a 23-year-old Pittsburg man with murder following a fatal drunk-driving accident in San Jose about two weeks ago.

    Prosecutors last week charged Dario Dwayne Taylor for the murder of John Melo, a 59-year-old San Jose man, who was struck by Taylor's burgundy 1999 Volkswagen Passat on May 17 about 9:30 p.m. on South 33rd Street and Shortridge Ave. He is scheduled to appear in court on July 9.

    His attorney, deputy public defender Sylvia Perez MacDonald, told the Mercury News that Taylor is expressing regret and "remorse" for the death.

    The California Highway Patrol had arrested Taylor in connection with driving drunk and being unlicensed after a wild chase. Prosecutors amended the charge to include murder, San Jose police reported Tuesday.

    At the time, CHP officer saw the burgundy 1999 Passat  without license plates exiting U.S. Highway 101 on eastbound McKee Road near North 33rd Street Thursday about 9:30 p.m. The officer took an open container of alcohol from one of two female passengers, police said.

    The officer then ordered Taylor out of the car, and police said that's when Taylor took off, striking a parked Honda, and ramming into a parked Volkswagen Golf on 33rd Street past Alum Rock Avenue.

    The 59-year-old man got stuck between the two cars, and he died May 18 about 7:30 a.m. at Regional Medical Center, police said. A 31-year-old woman standing nearby suffered moderate injuries, and her 11-year-old son avoided being hit, police said.

    Taylor continued on, hitting more cars. He finally smacked into an oncoming Chrysler and the collision set both vehicles on fire, police said.

    Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-432-4758 or lisa.fernandez@nbcuni.com. Follow her at Twitter.com/ljfernandez.