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Monday Court Date Set For Hit And Run Driver

Bail has been set at $2 million for a Waterford man accused of murder in a hit and run accident that resulted in the death of an Oakdale man.

Authorities reported the arrest of Rodrigo Joel Mendoza, 27, of Waterford in connection with the early morning crash on Saturday, June 2. He was booked into Stanislaus County Jail on Thursday, June 7 on charges including murder, hit and run causing great bodily injury or death and driving on a suspended license. Additional charges now include gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated.

According to the CHP report, Mendoza was driving a Mercedes on Yosemite near Geer about 1:45 a.m. on June 2 when he came upon the back end of a 1953 Chevy truck and, because of his speed, was unable to avoid striking the back of that vehicle. The driver of the eastbound Chevy, identified as Marinus Lubbers, 45, of Oakdale, was ejected from the vehicle as it overturned and was pronounced deceased on the scene. Mendoza originally fled the scene of the accident but was apprehended later by police and taken into custody. He was booked without bail but had bail set at $2 million in a first court appearance; he is due to return to Stanislaus County Superior Court on Monday, June 18.