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James Jose Ramirez charged in 2013 fatal crash

Published On: Feb 21 2014 05:15:02 PM EST   Updated On: Feb 21 2014 05:16:26 PM EST

An Allentown man has been charged with homicide by vehicle and other offenses for allegedly causing a two-vehicle crash that killed one person and seriously injured another on the city's South Side last year.

Allentown police determined that James Jose Ramirez, 21, of 1216 Hanover Ave., was traveling 75 mph in a 40 mph zone when he lost control of his car along S. Fourth Street at Chapel Avenue at about 3:02 a.m. April 28, 2013.

Police investigators determined Ramirez was driving north on S. Fourth when his vehicle struck another driven by Genia Lowry, then 25, who had a front-seat passenger, Teeaira Butler, who was 22. Butler suffered minor injuries.


Ramirez lost control of his vehicle, which left the roadway and struck a utility pole.

Juan Oquendo-Mota, 17, the back-seat passenger in Ramirez’s vehicle,  was thrown from the vehicle and struck a street sign. Oquendo-Mota died from his injuries.

The front-seat passenger in Ramirez’s vehicle, Randy Robertson, then 20, struck the windshield and suffered head and facial injuries. He has recovered.

Blood later was drawn from Ramirez, who was 20 years old at the time of the crash. His blood-alcohol content was .03 percent.

Ramirez has been charged with one count of homicide by vehicle, a third-degree felony; one count of involuntary manslaughter, a first-degree misdemeanor; one count of aggravated assault by vehicle, a third-degree felony; four counts of recklessly endangering another person; one count of driving under the influence of alcohol, a misdemeanor; and summary offenses of reckless driving, driving vehicle at an unsafe speed and violating posted speed limits.