Woman says witnesses forced her to drink alcohol

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A judge ordered the release of a woman jailed on accusations she hit four people attending a balloon release honoring the victim of a prior fatal crash, but she will remain in custody on an immigration detainer, the 8 News Now Investigators have learned.

On Monday night, North Las Vegas police arrested Caren Quiroz-Alvarez, 37, after she allegedly hit four people while her two children were in her vehicle. She faces charges of DUI, failure to decrease speed, and child endangerment, police said.

Officers were dispatched to the “balloon release” near West Lake Mead Boulevard and Engelstad Street at around 9 p.m. on Monday, March 18 after the collision, police said.

Exactly one year ago, a motorcyclist, Ronald James Choyce Jr., 32, of Las Vegas, was killed in a crash at that intersection. A witness at the scene told 8 News Now that the group was gathering for a memorial for Choyce.

On Wednesday, a North Las Vegas Justice Court judge released Quiroz-Alvarez because prosecutors had not yet filed a criminal complaint against her.

However, jail records indicate Quiroz-Alvarez would remain in custody on a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainer. A police spokesperson confirmed the hold Wednesday and it was unclear if ICE could release Quiroz-Alvarez at some point.

On her arrest report, police said Quiroz-Alvarez was born in the United States.

Quiroz-Alvarez told police she was driving west on Lake Mead Boulevard and there were a lot of people on the road as she drove through, according to the arrest report. She told police “some type of collision occurred,” and suddenly “dozens” of people surrounded her vehicle, pulled her out, and battered her.

Her daughters also told police that several people punched them in the heads during the incident.

Quiroz-Alvarez and her daughters were unable to provide descriptions or point out the people who she said battered them because “the incident occurred too quickly,” according to the report.

She told police that she did not drink any alcohol before driving, but when she was pulled out of her car by the people who battered her, they “shoved several different types of alcoholic beverages into her mouth forcing her to drink the bottles,” the report stated.

Quiroz-Alvarez also told police that she was three months pregnant, but medical staff at a local hospital said she was not pregnant.

Quiroz-Alvarez was due to return to court in July.

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