Victim: Cheryl Ceran

An intoxicated illegal alien was charged with vehicular homicide in the deaths of mother and two of her young children

Perpetrator: Carlos Prieto

Crime Description:


On the morning of December 24, 2006, the Ceran family was driving home to Cedar Hills, Utah, after a performance of “A Christmas Carol” and some last minute Christmas shopping. The celebration of Christmas will forever be bittersweet for the remaining members of the Ceran family.  Mrs. Ceran and two of the children were tragically killed, allegedly by Carlos Prieto, an illegal alien.

Intoxicated, Prieto allegedly ran a red light and smashed into the Ceran’s vehicle, killing Cheryl, 47, and Ian, 15, instantly. Julianna, 7, died later at the Primary Children’s Medical Center where she was admitted, along with Caleb, 12, who had a broken pelvis and ribs. The car wrapped around 19 year old Clarissa’s legs. Gary Ceran, husband and father, survived the accident along with his two injured children.

Half of Gary Ceran's family were gone, yet he found forgiveness for Carlos Prieto. 

Gary Ceran spoke of his wife, Cheryl, as “the sun that brought light to my life”. (1) Of his “little princess”, Julianna, he said, “…her singing, dancing, and laughter brightened our world”. (2)  Ian would be remembered by his father as the “gentle giant he became”. (2) Ian was a gifted artist, pianist and composer.  Clarissa is a dance major at Brigham Young University and friends worried she might never dance again. Neighbors spoke of the love the family showed for each other.

Prieto, a Mexican national, was described as “smelling strongly of alcohol and having glassy blood shot eyes” at the scene. (3)  Carlos Prieto was charged and arraigned with three counts of automobile homicide, three counts of driving under the influence, and driving without a license.  He will be turned over to ICE when the criminal case is resolved. 

1n 2004, Prieto was cited for speeding and driving without a license and given a fine.  Jail records stated he had two prior arrests for drunk driving.






1. Cheryl Lynn Ceran 1959-2006

2. Julianna Janae Ceran 1999-2006

3. Drunk Driver of Fatal Crash Believed to be an Illegal Immi___________GRANT