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Woman Pleads Not Guilty In Chula Vista Road Rage Case

Darla Renee Jackson at her arraignment, June 2, 2015.
Darla Renee Jackson at her arraignment, June 2, 2015.

A 25-year-old woman accused of running down a motorcyclist with her car during a fit of road rage on a South Bay freeway pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a murder charge.

Bail was set at $1 million for Darla Renee Jackson, who faces 15 years to life in prison if convicted.

Jackson was heading north on Interstate 5 in Chula Vista when she allegedly got angry with a man riding a red Ducati motorcycle near her 2012 Nissan Altima about 5:30 p.m. last Thursday.


"There was a bit of a back and forth altercation between the two," Deputy District Attorney Laura Evans said outside court.

She said 39-year-old Zachary Buob merged onto eastbound State Route 54 and the defendant chased him across lanes of the I-5 and onto the 54 freeway. Jackson struck him with her car near Sweetwater Road, and then ran over him, the prosecutor alleged.

Buob, a chief petty officer in special operations for the U.S. Navy, was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The reason for the roadway dispute was unclear.

Jackson could be seen crying and shaking during her arraignment.


"She's very upset obviously," said defense attorney Stephen Cline. "She's 25 years old, she's got a 3 1/2-year-old child at home and she's charged with murder. I think that's a pretty heavy-duty thing to swallow."

Cline said Jackson told him that Buob sped by her on his motorcycle; he got mad about something; he kicked her car; and she chased after him and they collided at the end when they ran into traffic.

"She's very sorry, she's very scared, she's very upset, she's very traumatized," Cline told reporters.

Authorities asked any witnesses to the crash or what led up to it to call California Highway Patrol traffic investigator Brad Clinkscales at (619) 220-5492.

Jackson is due back in court July 10 for a status conference. A preliminary hearing was tentatively scheduled for Aug. 17.