Two fatalities in San Andreas CHP area

Two single-vehicle accidents in Calaveras County resulted in the deaths of two people on Sunday.

San Andreas-area California Highway Patrol Officer Eric Parsons said the first occurred about 1:45 a.m. in a rural area north of Milton.

Barry Godwin, 26, of Burson, was driving a 2005 GMC pickup truck on Milton Road, north of South Gulch Road between the towns of Jenny Lind and Milton. Parsons said the roadway was located between “Rancho Calaveras and the dump,” but there was “nothing unusual about that road that makes it extra dangerous. Godwin lost control of the vehicle on a right-hand curve. The pickup traveled across the southbound lane and onto the west shoulder, where it veered back toward the road.

When it came back onto the road, the truck overturned several times before coming to rest on the roof on the east side of the road.

“A neighbor heard it and called it in,” Parsons said.

Godwin was pronounced dead at the scene.

Parsons said investigators were seeking to determine how fast Godwin was driving and how he lost control. Conditions were dry and cool, a CHP press release stated.

Godwin added that a toxicology report was expected to determine if Godwin was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The other fatal collision on Sunday was reported by a pedestrian near Highway 26 and Sport Hill Road in Mokelumne Hill, who located a dead motorcyclist and a 2001 Harley Davidson after 2 p.m.

Parsons said the CHP is still investigating when and how the accident occured, because the only report was made by the pedestrian who did not witness the accident.

“The reporting party went through the area at around 10:30 [a.m.] and the motorcycle wasn't there and, upon returning, they saw the motorcycle there,” Parsons said. “There were no calls from dispatch between those times.”

Investigators were contacting acquaintances and family members to “establish a timeline” of what may have occurred and where the driver was expected to be

“We are getting people in the previous 24 hours that may have had some information about route of travel and things like that,” Parsons said.

Parsons said he did not know where the motorcycle was located in comparison to the nearby roadway. Officers who responded to the scene determined that the driver was driving a 2001 Harley-Davidson Sportster motorcycle eastbound on Highway 26, east of Sport Hill Road.

Richi Pierce, 54, of Stockton, was pronounced dead at the scene as a result of injuries sustained when the motorcycle collided with a tree and he was ejected.

It is unknown if alcohol or drugs played a role in the collision.

The San Andreas-area CHP has dealt with 13 fatal collisions with 15 total deaths this year.

DUI arrest and three-car collision in Sonora CHP area

A Soulsbyville man was arrested on suspicion of DUI after crashing a cement-mixer truck near Buck Meadows on Friday.

About 10:10 a.m., Steven Sullivan, 48, of Soulsbyville, was driving a 2005 Peterbilt cement-mixer for his employer on Highway 120, east of Buck Meadows. According to a CHP press release, Sullivan was leaving a construction site after concrete had been poured.

Sullivan was driving the truck west of Packard Canyon Road on a straightaway when he allowed the truck to travel over an asphalt curb and onto an unimproved dirt shoulder. Sullivan veered the vehicle to the left, which directed the vehicle toward a steep incline embankment on the south shoulder of Highway 120. Sullivan steered back toward the right and the vehicle overturned onto it's left side across the south shoulder, eastbound lane and part of the westbound lane.

Sonora-area CHP officer Joshua McKernan said Sullivan was wearing his seatbelt but sustained major injuries. He was arrested on suspicion of driving while under the influence but was released to the custody of Adventist Health Sonora for medical treatment.

McKernan added that there was no hazardous material release and no spillage from the concrete mixer.

One-way traffic control was in effect for about four hours and 20 minutes for the recovery of the vehicle and clean up.

Earlier in the day, another large Peterbilt tractor-trailer truck was involved in a three-vehicle collision on Highway 120 and Green Springs Road outside of Jamestown.

About 8 a.m., John Galligher, 51, of Modesto, was driving a 1997 GMC north on Green Springs Road and stopped at the Highway 120 intersection. At the same time, Thomas Campbell, 63, of Ripon, was driving a 2013 Peterbilt westbound on Highway 120 about 40 to 45 miles per hour.

A third vehicle, a motorist in a 2018 Toyota Sienna, was driving eastbound on Highway 120 about 40 to 45 miles per hour with seven passengers and driver James Park, 70, of Dublin.

Galligher turned west onto Highway 120, and the 2018 Toyota Sienna crashed into the left side of the vehicle. Right after the collision, the 2013 Peterbilt truck struck the right side of Galligher’s vehicle.

Galligher sustained moderate injuries but declined transport to a medical center.
Park sustained minor injuries and his passengers; females Kyungtae Chai, 26, Hyerin Kim, 23, Minji Yoo, 24, Jean Yang, 18, Seonghee Cho, 48, and Hyun Kim, 15, and male Gyeongmun Park, 27, all sustained minor to moderate injuries. All of them were transported to Adventist Health Sonora for treatment.

Campbell sustained moderate injuries and was transported to Adventist Health Sonora for treatment.
McKernan said culpability in the accident was still under investigation, but neither drugs nor alcohol were not believed to be a factor.

Drugs found in Sonora vehicle

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Sonora man on Sunday afternoon after multiple drugs, including psilocybin mushrooms, MDMA, cocaine, codeine and concentrated cannabis were located inside of his Mitsubishi Lancer.

According to Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office logs, the vehicle was pulled over about 4:45 p.m. on Sunday on Longeway Road and Amy Drive in Sonora

Sgt. Andrea Benson said 11.23 grams of cocaine, 19.05 grams of the psilocybin mushrooms, 0.55 grams of MDMA, and a bottle of liquid codeine were found.

A photo posted by the Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office on its Facebook page related to the arrest and drug seizure also showed an iPhone, a video or photography device and a baggie of marijuana. The photo also shows $465 in cash with others hidden underneath.

Sebastien Sauve Christensen, 27, of the 21300 block of Ridgeview Drive, Sonora, was booked on suspicion of transporting a narcotic controlled substance, possession of a narcotic controlled substance for sale, possession of a controlled substance for sale, transporting a controlled substance and misdemeanor charges possession of a narcotic controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance without a prescription.

Contact Giuseppe Ricapito at (209) 588-4526 or gricapito@uniondemocrat.com . Follow him on Twitter @gsepinsonora.

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