CHP recommends prosecuting driver who rear-ended car, killing 5 in family, maiming child

  • 1/21/2007: A11:

    1/20/2007:A9: Ryan Karr

    PC: The driver of the car that caused the collision, Ryan Karr, 26 of Windsor, left, walks with California HIghway Parol officer Heather Bushey, center and Sonoma Life Support's Janet Doty near the scene of the crash on the northbound lanes of Highway 101 near the Airport exit. (The Press Democrat) / Crista Jeremiason) 1/19/07

The CHP has completed a 10-month investigation into a fiery crash on Highway 101 that claimed the lives of five family members and badly burned a 5-year-old boy, recommending that the driver who struck their car face charges.

CHP Officer Barbara Upham said Wednesday the report was turned over to the Sonoma County district attorney. She would not detail what charges were recommended for Ryan Karr, 26, whose Mitsubishi coupe smashed into the back of the Honda Civic during the evening commute Jan. 19.

"That's up to the D.A.'s office to make the final determination," Upham said.

The district attorney's spokeswoman, Donna Edwards, declined to comment on what charges Karr may face.

"We just have started reviewing it," she said. "We would not speculate on a pending case."

At the crash scene, on Highway 101 north of Airport Boulevard, rescuers pulled Christian Flores Carlos, 5, of Windsor from the burning vehicle.

But the driver, Edith Carlos Medina, 23, his mother, suffered fatal injuries.

So did his grandmother Maria Lopez Camacho, 54; brother, Fernando Flores Carlos, 7; and aunts Almadelia Mendera-Basurto, 16, and Carmina Solorio, 23.

Solorio was from Mexico. The others were from Windsor.

"This accident changed the lives of everyone in my family," said Christian's aunt Francisca Jimenez, concurring with the CHP's recommendation. "All of us who drive need to be aware of the consequences. My whole family died. This could happen to others."

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