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Ex-city clerk charged in wrong-way crash

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By Mercy Lopez

Sheryl Yara, a former Las Vegas city clerk, was arrested on Saturday night as a result of a wrong-way crash, just south of Las Vegas.

She has been charged with aggravated DWI, causing great bodily harm by vehicle due to DWI, and driving the wrong way.

This is her first DWI.

According to court documents, Yara, 57, allegedly was driving northbound on the southbound lanes of Interstate 25 between the Romeroville exit and Las Vegas around 7 p.m. Saturday. Yara allegedly crashed into another vehicle traveling southbound. Yara told the state police officer Robert Lujan she thought she was driving in the correct lane.

A message left for Yara at Luna Community College, where she is the administrative assistant for LCC President Leroy “Huero” Sanchez, was left unreturned as of Optic press time. Yara’s attorney Arthur Bustos said he was still familiarizing himself with the case as of Friday morning.

According to court documents, Yara admitted to Lujan that she had consumed one beer and at least one shot prior to the crash. Yara refused several field sobriety tests, including a breath test. She agreed to a blood test, but the results of that test are unavailable.

Two occupants of the vehicle allegedly hit by Yara sustained cuts to their heads, fractured ribs and a fractured clavicle as a result of the crash. Their conditions were unclear as of press time.

Yara was booked into the San Miguel County Detention Center. Magistrate Judge Christian Montaño set Yara’s bail at $6,000. She had already made bond by Friday morning.

Yara served as Las Vegas City Clerk for several years until June 2008.

Saturday’s crash caused local resident Ray Collins to reiterate his call for stiffer DWI laws and better control of alcohol sales in the state.

Collins, who lost five family members as a result of a wrong way driver 10 years ago, said he was grateful nobody was killed in the crash. He added that DWI efforts need to be addressed more seriously by the state legislature.

“They need to do more about the DWI situation,” Collins said. “Our state has become a cemetery with all the crosses on the side of roads.”