HILLSBORO — A 19-year-old woman who drove an SUV into a pile of leaves that concealed two girls has been found guilty in the fatal hit-and-run case.
A Washington County jury took less than two hours Wednesday to find Cinthya Garcia-Cisneros guilty of felony charges.
The woman is said to have learned after arriving home Oct. 20 she may have struck two children on Main Street in Forest Grove but didn’t come forward. Police found her the following day.
The prosecution said she was required to return to the scene of the accident as soon as she learned of it. Her defense lawyer said the law doesn’t say anything about the requirements when a driver learns only later about an accident.
Garcia-Cisneros was reportedly on her way home from getting fast food when she drove through the leaves. Her boyfriend and brother were passengers in the vehicle.
Neighbors had raked piles near the curb for leaf pick-up. Garcia-Cisneros hit the leaves shortly before 8:30 p.m., she testified, and felt a bump.
Within minutes, her brother returned to the scene on his way to his girlfriend’s house and saw a man standing over the pile, screaming.
The girls were later identified as step-sisters, 6-year-old Anna Dieter-Eckerdt and 11-year-old Abigail Robinson. Anna died at the scene. Abigail died later at a Portland hospital.
Defense attorney Ethan Levi said Garcia-Cisneros was in a state of denial after learning of the children and fixated on the possibility she wasn’t the driver who struck them.
Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 31.