Some people are just bad people. That seems to be the case with Darla Jackson, a 27-year-old woman who has just been sentenced to six years in prison for killing a motorcyclist in a road rage incident. Jackson’s past is lined with ex-boyfriends who paint a frightening picture of an obsessive and angry woman hellbent on vengeance.
Jackson, of Imperial Beach, California, was driving on Interstate 5 in Chula Vista when she got in some kind of fight with Zach Buob, a 39-year-old Navy chief petty officer. She followed Buob onto Highway 54, chasing him across lanes of traffic at speeds exceeding 90 mph. When traffic slowed, Jackson rammed into Buob. Buob was thrown from his motorcycle, and while Jackson swerved and missed the bike, she ran over Buob. He later died in a nearby hospital.
Deputy District Attorney Laura Evans spoke at trial about the barbarity of Jackson’s pursuit of the man.
“Whatever the purpose, she chased. She sped. She followed too closely, and she hunted him down.”
Buob’s family felt that Jackson should serve more time. The conditions of her plea deal, which had her pleading guilty to voluntary manslaughter, offered a sentence as high as 11 years.
A case for a harsher sentence can be found in Jackson’s past. Not one, but two ex-boyfriends had filed restraining orders against her. They alleged that she would call and text repeatedly and show up at their homes and workplaces unannounced. She also allegedly threatened not just physical violence, but claimed she would hurt herself and tell the police that they were responsible. One of her exes said that she once attempted to run him over with her car.
One ex, identified only as Danny, said she made up a story about him and filed a restraining order against him. He said it only made him happy, as he would have done anything to get her away from him. He said she seemed normal when he first met her, but in truth was “a really aggressive, possessive person.”
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