Woman accused of killing 8-year-old girl while driving drunk released from jail

Friday, April 21, 2017
LEAGUE CITY, Texas (KTRK) -- The woman who rear-ended a family and killed an 8-year-old girl in League City was not only legally drunk, but took a blood alcohol test showing she was three times the legal limit, according to police.

Erika Diebel, 41, of League City, was arrested on a charge of intoxication manslaughter with a vehicle. She was released from jail late Thursday evening after posting bond.

The charge stems from the wreck on April 6 which resulted in the death of Kelsey Nalepa.

Investigators say Kelsey was riding in a car with her parents on West Main Street when they were hit from behind by a vehicle driven by Diebel.

"The probable cause indicated that she was intoxicated," said League City Police public information officer Kelly Williamson.

Court documents show a blood sample taken from Diebel shortly after the wreck measured her blood alcohol content at .249 -- over three times the legal limit for someone behind the wheel.

Investigators have not said where Diebel was drinking prior to the wreck.

Arrest after girl killed in crash in League City

"It's disgusting," said Ross Elementary parent Heather Valarino.

Kelsey was in third grade at the school. Outside the campus, a memorial continues to grow, as does frustration over drunk driving.

"This is what Uber is for. So many other options than to get in a car," said Valarino.

Attorney Alton C. Todd issued a statement following the arrest, on behalf of Kelsey Nalepa's parents:

"Marcus and Nicole are upset and disappointed with Erika Diebel and her actions. The Nalepa family wants to thank the League City Police Department and everyone who has supported them and their family through this terrible time in their lives. They are extremely grateful to the community for their love and support." Todd says the family is already in the process of filing a wrongful death suit.
Diebel has no criminal history. Her bond is set at $100,000. She remains in custody at the jail inside the League City Police Department.

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