FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – The bail amount for the woman accused of driving the vehicle that struck and killed a Hoover High School student on October 4, 2022, was lowered on Wednesday after their attorney cited his client’s financial hardships.
The defendant, 39-year-old Lisa Spoors, was charged more than two months after the incident with DUI and the murder of 15-year-old Hoover High Student Rashad Al-Hakim Jr.
Around 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 4, 2022, officers with the Fresno Police Department were called out to Hoover High School after it was reported that a student had been hit by a car. Rashad was rushed to a local hospital, where officials said he died a week later.
Following the crash, officials said the driver left the area without stopping to check on Rashad. Around 20 minutes later, officers said Spoors called the department’s dispatch center to report hitting something in the road but claimed that they were not sure what it was. Officers met with Spoors in a parking lot near First Street and Bullard Avenue where they underwent a sobriety test.
Spoors was ultimately charged by the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office on December 22, 2022.
Spoors’ defense attorney, Marc Kapetan, argued during Wednesday’s hearing for Spoors’ bail to be reduced due to financial hardships that included $4,000 a semester tuition for Spoors’ Master’s Degree as well as the fact that Spoors was terminated as a graduate teaching associate due to this incident.
The prosecution revealed during the arraignment that Spoors was under the influence of methamphetamine, cocaine, and marijuana at the time of the crash.
The Fresno County Superior Court judge made the decision to reduce bail from the original $1,055,000 to $150,000. That bail amount was reduced with the conditions that if Spoors posts bail, they will be prohibited from driving and must surrender their license. Spoors is also prohibited from possessing or consuming alcohol or being at locations where it is sold like nightclubs, bars, or liquor stores. Spoors must also submit to chemical testing and a narcotic monitoring device.
“Under the new California bail system, bail has to be at a level that a person can afford, basically,” said Spoors’ attorney Marc Kapetan. “So if you are going to set bail you have to make it a reasonable bail based on their financial situation. So the judge basically set it in relation to her income and expenses.”
After the arraignment, the victim’s mother Ragina Bell was furious with the court’s decision – as well as the people’s representation.
“They want to talk about she has to pay student loans and get financial aid. I don’t care, my son couldn’t finish high school. He was only a freshman, you’re not bringing that up.”
Bell said she has missed out on Halloween, Homecoming, and Rashad’s first basketball game – following her son’s death in October.
“I missed out on a lot, he missed out on a lot and it’s all because of her – but they let her spend the last holiday with her family. They cared about that. They cared that much to let her have another holiday. I don’t get no more holidays with my son….you stole my world.”
Spoors’ preliminary hearing is set for March 2.