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HesperiaStar.com
  • Deputies: Mother's Day crash caused by prescription medication, drowsiness

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  • Authorities said Monday they have determined a driver’s drowsiness from prescription drugs resulted in the Mother’s Day crash that killed a Hesperia family of five May 11 at the intersection of Balsam Avenue and Main Street in Hesperia.
    A delivery van driven by Joshua Smith, 30, hit the family’s Honda. San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Sgt. Doug Hubbard said Monday the toxicology results reveal Smith was driving under the influence of prescription drugs, specifically “some derivative of a pain medication.”
    “It was not blatant,” said Hubbard. “It wasn’t like what you see all the time where someone leaves a bar drunk with twice the legal limit of alcohol. It’s not just alcohol, you can drive under the influence of prescription drugs too and he just fell asleep. We don’t believe he even knew he left the roadway.”
    Charges have not been filed against Smith, Hubbard said. The Sheriff’s Department has submitted the case to the District Attorney’s Office, which will determine what, if any, charges will be filed.
    The family was heading to Disneyland on the morning of the crash. Initial reports said their blue Honda was traveling southbound on Balsam Avenue and had been idle at a stop sign when a white delivery van heading east on Main Street crossed into westbound lanes and hit the Honda at 6:55 a.m.
    "The impact caused the delivery van to overturn, come into contact with a telephone pole and come to rest on the car," Hubbard told the Daily Press on May 11.
    Hubbard said the impact killed all occupants of the Honda, who were later identified as Gerardo Cruz Jimenez, 30; Angelica Garcia, 25; Cindy Jimenez Garcia, 3; Ivan Jimenez Garcia, 2, and Freddy Garcia, 9, all of Hesperia.
    Hubbard said Smith was “preparing local deliveries for that day.”
    Speed and vehicular problems have been ruled out as factors in the accident, Hubbard said. The investigation to rule out these factors has been ongoing since the crash, he said.
    Hubbard said Smith has been cooperative throughout the investigation and continues to cooperate with authorities.
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