Crime

Nadine Montoya: Trial of alleged Burger King hit-and-run driver started this morning

What started as a late-night drive-thru run last May for 49-year-old Lilian Verdonkschot, her daughter and her daughter's friend turned tragic when Verdonkschot was hit by the driver of a Cadillac DeVille. The last thing Verdonkschot's daughter heard before her mother was crushed under the Cadillac's tires was, "Let's just fucking hit them."

This morning, jury selection began in the Denver District Court trial of Nadine Montoya, the alleged driver of the Cadillac.

For more on what happened that night, check out the Westword story, "After Lilian Verdonkschot Died, Nadine Montoya Was Charged With a Hit-and-Run. But Was Hate Behind the Wheel?"

Though witnesses said Montoya and her alleged accomplice called Verdonkschot, her daughter and her daughter's friend "stupid white bitches" before hitting Verdonkschot with her car after an altercation that began with a request for a cigarette, Montoya wasn't charged with a hate crime. But she is accused of first-degree murder.

Will a jury find that Montoya ran over Verdonkschot on purpose? Or will they believe the story her sister told Westword -- that Montoya, a mother of five in her late 20s, was scared by the fight that broke out between her group and Verdonkschot's, and was attempting to leave the parking lot when she accidentally hit Verdonkschot?

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Melanie Asmar is a staff writer for Westword. She joined the paper in 2009 and has won awards for her stories about education, immigration and epic legal battles. Got a tip? She'd love to hear it.
Contact: Melanie Asmar