Tag Archives: DUI

Car plows into bus stop killing 1; DUI likely, police say

Really? Oh yeah, and of course it was hit-and-run. Oh, yeah, witnesses say the driver ran a red light. incident occurred 5/13/2013 around 0400.


Dead ped at a bus stop? Seriously, how often do thinkgs like this happen? Pretty often apparently. And, oh yeah, in March a suspected dui driver slammed into a Phoenix bus stop and killed 2 people — at least that guy didn’t (or couldn’t) hit-and-run.

Oh well back to the present case, excerpts:

One person is dead, a second is injured and a third is in police custody after a car plowed into a Phoenix bus stop before sunrise Monday. Police believe the driver, a 22-year-old Hispanic woman, was impaired at the time of the wreck…. According to police, a black sedan was heading north on 27th Avenue when the driver ran a red light. She swerved to avoid two cars, veered off the road and slammed into the bus stop by the 7-Eleven at Indian School Road… Harry Cleveland, 50, was sitting on the bus bench when the car hit it. He took the brunt of the impact and died about an hour later at a local hospital. A 20-year-old man who had been sitting on another bench, was taken to a local hospital, as well. His condition was not immediately available. A 19-year-old woman who also was waiting at the bus stop managed to dodge the out-of-control car and avoid injury…. Witnesses told investigators that the driver, now identified as Elsa Olivares, and the passenger ran away from the scene. Police checked the vehicle’s registration and went to the address listed. While en route to that apartment, police received a call from Olivares. After telling them she was involved in the crash, she turned herself in.


Late May, the suspect entered not-guilty pleas to all charges, the usual litany: 2nd Degree Murder, agg assault, endangerment, leaving the scene of a fatal. You can read all about it case lookup (or here at Maricopa County Superior Court directly) St of AZ Vs. Elsa Priscila Olivares CR-2013421459; case minutes.  State’s Attorney is Rebecca Kennelly. Defendant’s Attorney is presently Jesus Acosta (i believe appointed?). This is a “complex case”. Trial is currently set for mid-January 2014.

Formal list of charges:

13-1103 (F2) MANSLAUGHTER 5/13/2013
13-1204 (F3) AGGRAVATED ASSAULT 5/13/2013
13-1201 (F6) ENDANGERMENT 5/13/2013

Bicyclist killed in Tucson hit-and-run was SunTran driver

05/23/2013 Bicyclist John Akers was struck and killed at the intersection of Mission and Irvington Road; this is near but outside of Tucson, and so Pima County Sheriff’s Office handled the investigation. The driver fled the scene. Akers was on his way to work around 3:30a as a SunTran driver. Deputies located a suspect vehicle and a suspect was arrested a few hours later. The bicyclist was northbound, and the motorist was eastbound — this is a signalized intersection.  Bicyclist killed in Tucson hit-and-run was SunTran driver

tucsonvelo.com has reported that “Pima County Sheriff’s Deputy and BAC liaison Ryan Roher said via email that alcohol was involved. He said the suspect left the scene, but was later apprehended by Pima County deputies. According to Roher the cyclist was wearing a helmet and witnesses indicate the cyclist was riding  ‘within the law.’ ”

The Criminal Case

Pima County Superior Court case CR20132547

UPDATED Jan 2014 tucsonvelo.com: “The driver who hit and killed John Akers, a SunTran driver who was cycling to work, has been sentenced to 15 years in jail, the Arizona Daily Star is reporting … Enrique F. Hernandez plead guilty to a reduced charge of manslaughter, leaving the scene of a crash that caused a death as well as driving under the influence”…”Hernandez, 25, ran a stop light at Mission and Irvington roads where he plowed into John Akers, who was riding his bike to work. Hernandez then fled the scene”

If this bit from the azstar is correct: “Hernandez was sentenced to 10 years in prison for the manslaughter charge and five years for leaving the scene of a deadly accident. Those prison terms will be served consecutively.” It is the ONLY sentence I’ve EVER seen where prison time will actually be served for hit-and-run.

Phoenix police officer dies in fatal hit-and-run

vehicleRaetzHitAndRunFatality[Update: driver sentenced] Although it seems obvious that police work is dangerous because there are bad guys with guns trying to kill them; roughly the same number of  policeman killed in the line of duty die as the result of a traffic collision than by being shot (or stabbed)….

May 19, 2013 ~ 3:30a, Phoenix police officer Daryl Raetz was killed while “processing a DUI suspect near 51st and Cambridge avenues when he was struck by a green Ford Expedition, which then fled the scene”. azcentral.com. The story doesn’t give much detail, I would assume from what was presented he was a pedestrian, which is consistent with the picture of the SUV that struck Raetz, which police released later. Continue reading Phoenix police officer dies in fatal hit-and-run

DUI suspected in Phoenix crash that injured 5

Yikes — head on collision with multiple life-threatening injuries to the children, whom police said were all properly restrained.

It was a glorious late-April morning in Phoenix, the sun had been up for just an hour, the kids were all buckled in…  seriously, how often does stuff like this happen happen? By the way, neither of the vehicles involved were remarkable, the victim was driving a Pontiac G6 and the suspect was driving a Mitsubishi Galant; both mid-sized sedans in the 3,000 pound weight range.
The collision occurred on Southern Avenue near 38th St, Southern Avenue is typical of the Phoenix Metro area’s many, fine, wide, straight, multi-laned, high-speed arterial streets (appears to be posted 45mph); they work really well except when drivers bump into one another, or a ped, or a a cyclist; and then people get seriously injured or die. Continue reading DUI suspected in Phoenix crash that injured 5

Driver sentenced in Tucson dui / hitandrun / switcheroo fatality

I’m collecting this here mostly for completeness; this is the case involving the death of motorized bicyclist, Craig Lewis, 47.  The perp is Samantha Baldwin, 23. Lewis was struck from behind while riding on the shoulder along W. Ajo Highway near Soledad Ave around 1 a.m. on May 19, 2012. Thanks to tucsonvelo.com for their coverage

http://tucsonvelo.com/news/cyclist-killed-in-crash-on-ajo-highway-driver-and-passenger-arrested/13317 Continue reading Driver sentenced in Tucson dui / hitandrun / switcheroo fatality

2 peds killed, 1 hurt after pickup truck slams into bus stop

Two dead peds, plus one seriously injured while in the process of boarding a city bus. Seriously, how often does this happen?

Police suspect the driver, Raymond J. Barela, , who was going the wrong way, of being impaired. 2 killed, 1 hurt after pickup truck slams into bus stop. 3/26/2013.

“Of the fatalities, only one has been identified (at the time of the news story). That victim is 47-year-old Jesus Antonio Martinez Chavez.”


Driver gets 6 years in sidewalk killing

The driver involved with a sidewalk-killing-hit-and-run that spurred the victim’s father to get “Joey’s Law” enacted has been sentenced to 6 years prison plus some probation. “Police say (Laura) Flanders drove onto the sidewalk and hit 18-year-old Joey Romero while he was walking home from work in October 2010″ [abc15].  Seriously, how often does this happen? Continue reading Driver gets 6 years in sidewalk killing

NAU student cyclist killed in hit-and-run

9/9/2012 Hit and run incident. Witnesses say driver was excessive speed in a residential neighborhood, near the intersection of Walapai and Mohawk Drives, in Flagstaff. “22-year-old Kelsey Lou Cody of Flagstaff was arrested on charges of manslaughter and fleeing the scene of a fatal accident”… police say alcohol was a factor. victim: Jordan A. Murphy-Mahoney, 21 years old. azdailysun.com story Continue reading NAU student cyclist killed in hit-and-run

It’s like a war zone out there…

Walk in the crosswalk; get hit with flying debris from a red-light-runner? Seriously, how often does this happen? (note to self — check ASDM for 2013, whenever that becomes available, and see if the peds show up in the collision — my guess is no but i really don’t know what the story is)

azcentral.com: …At about 9a.m. Sunday (3/10/2013), Kaylynn Ruth Kayanie, 25, was driving west on Broadway “at a high rate of speed” when she ran a red light and struck another vehicle that was traveling south on Priest Drive… The driver of the southbound vehicle, a 45-year-old woman, was ejected and taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries…  Two pedestrians who were in the crosswalk heading south on Priest at the time of the collision were hit by flying debris and taken to the hospital, where they were treated for cuts and bruises and released the same day, she said. Impairment does appear to be a factor in that case and investigators are awaiting drug-test results

The same story notes that the suspected impaired driver Veronica Muckerman made a bad left, killing a motorcyclist Elsa Tovar last week; was apparently driving without a license, due to being revoked in 2011 for another dui.

Arizona drug-related DUIs rising

Arizona Republic as well as other news outlets reported some stats recently; year-over-year alcohol DUI arrests were down, while drug DUI were up. The comparison to 2003 was startling — the number of arrests is up some twenty fold(! can that really be?). Actually looking at the (limited amount of) data, it looks like for some reason, 2011 was unusually high — perhaps some extra funding for DUI task force activity? Just a guess.

Coincidentally, i am reading One for the Road: Drunk Driving Since 1900 / Barron H. Lerner. There is a presentation here that sort of outlines the book. Though the author is an epidemiologist, the book is written more from a historian’s point of view. Very interesting. lots of non-obvious twists and turns and unlikely alliances. For example, in the early 1980’s both MADD (whom everybody knows) and RID (Remove Intoxicated Drivers) were both rapidly growing grassroots movements; MADD when on to grow enormously and achieved national stature whereas RID withered. MADD choose to take (beverage) industry money and also aligned themselves with media groups (e.g. NAB, National Assoc of Broadcasters) whereas RID went the opposite way. Media groups were opposed to nascent advertizing limitation. As a result MADD got infinite exposure, and RID got none.

Arizona drug-related DUIs rising

By Jim Walsh The Republic | azcentral.com
Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:55 AM

A growing percentage of arrests statewide for driving under the influence are related to prescription and illicit drugs, not alcohol, authorities say. Continue reading Arizona drug-related DUIs rising