Woman charged with attempted murder for allegedly driving car into protesters in Yorba Linda
SANTA ANA, Calif. - A Long Beach woman charged with attempted murder for allegedly driving her car into a group of activists in Yorba Linda is facing more felonies related to another protest in Seal Beach, prosecutors announced Wednesday.
The Orange County District Attorney's Office on Tuesday filed an amended complaint adding charges against Tatiana Rita Turner, 40, but the felony counts will not be formally accepted by a judge until the defendant returns to court Feb. 18.
Last September, Turner was charged with attempted murder, with a sentencing enhancement for attempted premeditated murder, making it a potential life-sentence case. She was also charged with six counts of assault with a deadly weapon, one count of mayhem and two counts of illegal use of tear gas.
She faces 33 years to life in prison if convicted of those charges and the two newly filed assault with a deadly weapon counts related to an alleged attack on two men last Aug. 29 in Seal Beach, said Kimberly Edds, a spokeswoman for the District Attorney's Office.
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Turner allegedly bludgeoned the victims with a four-foot rod after they were beaten to the ground by other activists at the Seal Beach protest, Edds said. Sheriff's investigators said Turner was affiliated with the "Caravan4Justice" organization, a car-based protest supporting the Black Lives Matter movement.
Members of the Caravan4Justice held a protest in support of Turner when she was in court last week.
Nearly a month after the Seal Beach demonstration, Turner allegedly plowed into a crowd made up of Black Lives Matter activists and supporters of then-President Donald Trump.
Turner, who was one of the organizers of the Sept. 26 ``March 4 Equality'' protest, was driving out of the Yorba Linda Public Library lot when she allegedly steered her Nissan Versa through an intersection, striking a man and a woman.
The man's legs were broken and the woman sustained major injuries, according to sheriff's officials.
Since last week, prosecutors have filed charges against five other defendants who were present at opposing protests in Yorba Linda, Edds said.
Danielle Lindgren, 44, of Corona, was charged with a misdemeanor count of possessing a baton. Turner allegedly drove over the head of Lindgren, a "counter-protester" who was hospitalized for several months, Edds said.
Cynthia Ruiz, 38, of Long Beach, was charged with two felony counts of illegal use of tear gas for allegedly pepper-spraying two men in separate incidents in Yorba Linda.
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Kristopher Wyrick, 42, of Alpine was charged with a felony count of illegal use of tear gas for allegedly attacking several protesters with bear spray, Edds said. Wyrick was also a "counter-protester" to the March 4 Equality rally against police brutality and in support of Black Lives Matter, according to prosecutors.
Justin Frazier, 26, of Santa Ana, was charged with a misdemeanor count of possessing a baton. Prosecutors allege he instructed fellow activists during the gathering.
Jason Matthew Mancuso, 46, was charged with a misdemeanor count of failing to disperse from a riot.
Investigators are looking for help identifying other suspects at the Aug. 29 protest in Seal Beach and the one in Yorba Linda the following month, Edds said.
Anyone with information was asked to call OC Crime Stoppers, which will accept anonymous tips, at 855-TIP-OCCS.