SOLANA BEACH — A good Samaritan identified a Carlsbad man as the driver who fled the scene following a fatal car accident on Interstate 5 last month that killed a pregnant woman and her unborn child.
Solomon Huss, an officer with the Los Angeles Police Department and a Marine reservist, testified at a preliminary hearing Jan. 28 that he first helped John Francis Sudac Jr. out from the back driver side passenger door of his totaled Nissan Altima. He said Sudac then yelled, “My friend is still inside.” Huss then pulled out an unidentified man from the floorboard of the front passenger seat of Sudac’s vehicle.
After helping the two men from the smoking vehicle, he said he then assisted several other people in righting the rolled SUV, which revealed the body of Yine Gonzalez. The pregnant mother from Tijuana and her unborn baby were killed after they were thrown partially out of the SUV. It was about that time that Huss noticed Sudac on his cell phone and later saw him being picked up from the scene before speaking with authorities.
Sudac, 27, is charged with one felony count each of gross vehicular manslaughter with the allegation that he fled the scene of a crime, hit-and-run causing death and misdemeanor marijuana possession. He faces up to 11 years in prison if convicted of the charges.
A Feb. 24 arraignment date was scheduled, at which time a trial date may be set.
Prosecutors allege Sudac had attended the Jan. 3 San Diego Chargers game and was traveling near Lomas Santa Fe Drive on Interstate 5 around 1:30 a.m. when he struck the rear bumper of a Ford Expedition causing the SUV to roll. Sudac fled the scene, but later turned himself in. Investigators believe Sudac tried to destroy evidence by shredding the Chargers ticket stub that matched a parking pass found in his Nissan Altima.
A few minutes before the accident, Lacreisha Wells testified that the Nissan Altima involved in the accident was “swerving” on the freeway. “I slowed down because I didn’t know what was going on with his car,” she said. Before losing sight of the Altima, she said she saw it almost hit another vehicle.
Defense attorney Herb Weston argued that there was a lack of evidence presented at the hearing to put his client behind the wheel at the time of the accident
Sudac remains out of custody on $200,000 bail.