Couple charged in connection with J-59 Crash

By Giuseppe Ricapito, The Union Democrat

A Sonora doctor and his wife turned themselves in to authorities Monday after being formally charged in connection with an Oct. 21 multi-vehicle crash on J-59 near Bonds Flat Road that left three people dead and three people injured.

Warrants were issued for Danny Mundall Anderson, 69, and his wife, Diane Marie Anderson, 65, on Friday.

Danny Anderson faces charges of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, reckless driving causing injury or death, destroying or concealing evidence and obstructing a police investigation. Diane Anderson faces charges of accessory after the fact, destroying or concealing evidence and obstructing an investigation.

Anderson is a physician associated with Adult Medical Specialists on Guzzi Lane in Sonora. State records show he has been licensed to practice in California since 1977.

Booking records listed Diane Anderson as a nurse.

Thomas Johnson, a Sacramento attorney representing the couple, said his clients provided aid and were also in contact with the California Highway Patrol at the scene of the accident.

“So to say that they left and were not there is not accurate,” he said.

Their bail amounts were $100,000 and $30,000, respectively, and both bailed out of custody on Monday.

Their arraignment is scheduled for April 21 at 8:30 a.m. in Department 2.

Johnson said that he did not know what the concealing or destruction of evidence charge meant “with respect to this complaint” and that he has not received discovery documents such as police and accident reports.

Johnson added he “looked forward” to the trial where “a full vetting of the facts” would be revealed.

“A trial will necessarily reveal the true steps and the steps Dr. Anderson took immediately after the accident and what the CHP revealed on scene,” Johnson said.

On Friday, Oct. 21, at around 4:20 p.m., Trista Hoffman was driving a 2002 Lexus SUV southbound on La Grange Road and swerved to avoid a head-on collision with a white 2014-2016 Acura MDX crossover SUV that had crossed the double yellow lines to pass Dorothy Eisemann, 66, driving northbound in a 2009 Toyota Camry.

The 2009 Toyota swerved onto the west dirt shoulder of La Grange Road before turning back onto the roadway, overturning, and colliding with the 2002 Lexus.

Hoffman, her mother and passenger Tina Hoffman, 51, and Rheinholt Eisemann, 72, Dorothy Eisemann’s husband and passenger, were pronounced dead at the scene.

Dillon Hoffman, 17, sustained major injuries.

Annie Johnson, 16, sustained major injuries.

Dorothy Eisemann sustained minor injuries.

At the beginning of November, a be-on-the-lookout was issued for the white Acura seen in surveillance footage from businesses and residences in the area as the vehicle suspected of causing the fatal collision.

In a Feb. 17 news release, the CHP released the identity of the suspected driver of the vehicle as Danny Anderson, and requested that the Tuolumne County District Attorney’s Office file charges against him.

“I have no idea why the CHP issued that information Feb. 17,” Johnson said. “We believe they've known for months who the driver was and that they have spoken to them.”

The Union Democrat
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