Suspect Arrested in Fatal DUI Crash Had Kids in the Vehicle

KGET reports that on September 22, a father who had spent the evening bowling with his wife and children and consuming several Long Island ice teas at P Dubbs Brew Pub /Mountain Bowling in Tehachapi. At approximately 8:45 p.m., the man had his last drink and got behind the wheel of his pickup truck. Both of his children were in the vehicle with him.

According to a report submitted to the court from the California Highway Patrol, 31-year-old Sean Pierre Pantoja began driving eastbound on Randsburg Cutoff Road. At approximately 10:12 p.m., Pantoja was in the Mojave area when he turned to speak to his son. In a matter of seconds, Pantoja’s truck collided with a Toyota Camry.

The CHP and emergency crews responded to the scene of the crash. The 39-year-old male driver of the Camry died at the scene of the crash. Pantoja’s children were injured in the crash and were transported to Antelope Valley Hospital for treatment of minor cuts and whiplash.

Pantoja told California Highway Patrol Officers investigating the crash that the Toyota had crossed into his lane. However, CHP investigators determined Pantoja was at fault in the fatal crash. 

An eyewitness confirmed that Pantoja was in the opposite lane when the crash happened. 

A breathalyzer test revealed that Pantoja had a blood-alcohol level of .16 percent – twice the legal limit of .08 percent.

An officer observed that Pantoja had very slurred speech and red and glassy eyes. When interviewed, he admitted to drinking the Long Island ice teas. The drink typically contains vodka, rum, tequila and gin and is served in 16-ounce glasses. 

Pantoja was arrested and was charged with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, two counts of DUI causing injury, and two counts of child endangerment and cruelty. 

Pantoja is due to appear in court for his arraignment on October 16.

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