The driver involved in an alleged DUI crash that took the life of a woman and her baby when a car crashed into an apartment in Livermore Saturday evening will be arraigned today on charges of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury.
The crash killed Esperanza Morales-Rodriguez, 46, of Seaside near Monterey, and her 14-month-old daughter, Yulidia Perez-Morales, and injured two boys, ages 6 and 7.
Livermore police Officer Ryan Sanchez said Brian Jones, a 35-year-old Livermore resident, was allegedly driving at high speeds on Murrieta Boulevard when he lost control of the vehicle. Sanchez said the mother and daughter were walking on a paved path between the sidewalk and an apartment complex when Jones's vehicle allegedly struck them.
Medical personnel pronounced both mother and daughter dead where the vehicle hit them, Sanchez said.
Police said debris from the crash struck two boys who were taken to a hospital and are in stable condition
Preliminary tests indicate that Jones was driving with a 0.13% blood-alcohol content or higher, Sanchez said. Investigators believe Jones had been drinking at the Livermore Wine Country Festival prior to the crash, which occurred at roughly 6:50 p.m.
"We know that he was at the wine country festival, but we don't know what time he left," Sanchez said. "They stopped serving alcohol at 5 p.m. and the crash happened about an hour and 50 minutes later."
Sanchez said that the wine festival is permitted by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, and vendors receive training about serving intoxicated individuals. Livermore police also maintain a presence at the festival, identifying visibly intoxicated people and helping them find sober rides, according to Sanchez.
There are unanswered questions about when Jones stopped drinking and what he did after leaving the wine festival, according to Sanchez, but police will be looking into those questions as the investigation continues.
"With a crime of this magnitude we focus on the collision itself and then over time we branch out," Sanchez said.
Anyone who witnessed the crash or has additional information about the events that led up to the fatal incident is asked to contact the Livermore Police Department at (925) 371-4777.
Contributions to help the family are being accepted at the Go Fund Me page at www.gofundme.com/tnamy8/