CHP: Big rig driver suspected of Highway 12 DUI crash had expired license

A trucker arrested Monday morning on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol near Sonoma also was driving with an expired license, the CHP said.

Zaid Desta, 78, of Oakland, was driving a big rig south on Eighth Street East around 10:30 a.m. when he made an unsafe left turn onto Highway 12, directly in front of a 2004 Chevy pickup driven by Victor Baltazar of Cameron Park, who collided with the rear axle of the big rig, Officer Vincent Pompliano said.

Baltazar had five passengers in the pickup, which was towing a trailer with a small tractor on it. He and one of the passengers complained of pain and were treated at the scene.

Pompliano did not provide Desta’s blood alcohol content at the time of his arrest, but noted that the legal limit for the driver of a commercial vehicle is .04 - half the limit for a non-commercial driver.

You can reach Staff Writer Austin Murphy at 707-521-5214 or

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