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DA vows to go after bar that served alleged drunken driver in UH student's death

Iliana Zepeda’s current bond is much higher than her last bond amount set during a DUI arrest in May. The DA’s office says her previous bond was $100.

KATY, Texas — On Tuesday, a criminal court judge set bond at $1 million for the woman accused of being intoxicated when she hit and killed a University of Houston student with her vehicle last weekend.

RELATED: UH student killed by accused drunk driver who was out on bond for another DUI charge

According to investigators, the suspect, 22-year-old Iliana Zepeda, was out on bond for another DUI at the time of Sunday’s fatal crash. Prosecutors said she had just left a nearby restaurant/bar that is also now under investigation by the Harris County District Attorney’s Vehicular Crimes Division and the TABC.

Zepeda’s current bond is much higher than her last bond amount set during a DUI arrest in May. The DA’s office says her previous bond was $100.

Back in May, the crash Zepeda is accused of being involved in resulted in no serious injuries. Court documents allege Zepeda was drunk when she drove away from a downtown club and slammed into a driver on I-45 then walked away. Documents show she was later tracked down outside a nearby hotel by officers where she failed a field sobriety test.

“That wasn’t enough of a wake-up call for her,” said Lynn Nguyen, chief of the Harris County DA’s Vehicular Crimes Division. “She went out again, and less than a year later, did the same thing but this time killed somebody.”

That somebody was 24-year-old Renzo Olano-Flores.

“He was wonderful,” said his big brother, Juan. “Big heart, always with a smile.”

Renzo was set to graduate from the University of Houston in May with a bachelor’s in construction management. The university said it's considering granting Renzo a posthumous degree.

“We still want to seek justice for him. He didn’t deserve this,” Juan said.

On Tuesday, the TABC and DA’s office confirmed they are looking into the establishment that Zepeda was allegedly drinking at minutes before the crash. Investigators said that after Zepeda left the crash scene, she was brought back by her sister who told officers she witnessed her sister drinking at the business before getting into a vehicle and leaving.

During the preliminary stages of the investigation, the DA’s office has asked KHOU 11 News not to disclose the name of the business.

“When I get an intoxication manslaughter case, it is no longer enough to just hold the person who is committing the intoxication manslaughter responsible. Especially if I know that that person received their alcohol from somewhere," Nguyen said.

Bars and restaurants can be held both civically and criminally responsible in these kinds of cases.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help the Olano-Flores family with funeral arrangements. Click here for details.

Lauren Talarico on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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