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Lompoc Woman Faces Murder Charges in Death of Retired Santa Ynez Teacher

By Christian Hartnett, KCOY Central Coast News Reporter,
Published On: Dec 21 2013 08:46:25 PM CST
Updated On: Dec 23 2013 02:03:06 PM CST

Retired Santa Ynez high school teacher Linda Wall is being remembered by the local community after she died from injuries in a car wreck Thursday night. This comes after the driver who smashed into her car was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Today, former students recalled memories of her in the classroom.

SANTA YNEZ, Calif. -

The driver who struck a vehicle driven by a retired Santa Ynez teacher Linda Wall will face a charge of felony murder.  Linda Wall, 68, died from injuries after her vehicle was rear-ended.

On Monday the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's office charged Lompoc resident Rebecca Cristal Sandoval, 37, with murder.

Sandoval appeared in Santa Maria courtroom Monday.  The accident happened in front of the Chumash Casino Thursday.  

Sandoval also faces charges of Felony Gross Vehicular Manslaughter while Intoxicated and Felony Driving Under the Influence of Drugs Causing Bodily Injury.  Sandoval received a similar charge for driving under the influence of drugs after an incident in July, 2013.

Wall was remembered over the weekend by her former students and colleagues, who shared fond memories of her in the classroom.  A single vase of flowers and a note honoring her life was placed at the scene of the accident.

In 2012, after 22 years of teaching foreign languages, Wall retired from Santa Ynez High School, just up the road from the accident scene. The marquee at the school paid tribute to someone colleagues say was always smiling and friendly.  Her former principal gave Wall high praise, and students said she was great at her job.

"She was very nice, she would help a lot with the students. If you needed help, she'd be there. I really liked her," said Alfonso Terrazas, a former student.

Another former student, Beth Wickholm, said "if you didn't understand something, she was really good at explaining it to you."


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