Man is convicted of manslaughter in 2020 La Jolla DUI crash that killed his two passengers

Two passengers in this car were killed in a crash early Nov. 22, 2020, on Girard Avenue in La Jolla.
(OnScene.TV )

A man who authorities said was driving while intoxicated when his car crashed in La Jolla, killing his two passengers, was convicted Jan. 26 of vehicular manslaughter.

Peter John Meno, 28, faces up to nine years in state prison when he is sentenced for the Nov. 22, 2020, crash that killed Jayden Rowley, 22, of Oceanside and Matthew Cate, 19, of Vista.

According to prosecutors, Meno’s blood-alcohol level was measured at 0.08 percent a couple of hours after the 3:15 a.m. crash. At the time, authorities said, he was driving on a suspended license due to previous tickets for speeding and running a red light.

As Meno turned onto Girard Avenue from Torrey Pines Road, his Nissan Altima jumped a curb and crashed into two trees, prosecutors said.

San Diego County Deputy District Attorney Cally Bright alleged that Meno was driving up to 85 mph before the crash.

Meno’s defense attorney, Jodi Green, told jurors that the car was going around 40 mph when the crash occurred.

After about two days of deliberations, the San Diego jury acquitted Meno of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated but found him guilty of the lesser offense of vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated with ordinary negligence.

The jury also found to be true an allegation that Meno was driving at an unsafe speed. It did not return that finding on allegations that he made an unsafe turning movement. ◆