Man Charged in Fatal Wreck
On Monday, August 10, 2009 Luke Anthoney Looshchen caused a three car accident going east bound on Highway 29. He was driving on the wrong side of the road when he collided with a jeep and a van which was carrying seven people. Pete Mendez and Paula Martinez were both pronounced dead on the scene, and Crystal Martinex died later on Tuesday. Stephanie Valadez was in critical condition and later died on Wednesday. Looshchen was charged with three counts of intoxication manslaughter which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison as well as three counts of intoxication assault which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Since Stephanie Valadez also died, one of the assault charges will be changed to manslaughter. The blood tests are still pending but Looshchen told the officer that he had been drinking as well as taking pain relievers and anti-depressants. Research showed that Looshchen was involved in two other accidents in the past three years and are now investigating those more closely.