A Jamestown woman is being charged with DUI murder after a man died from injuries he suffered in a crash she’s accused of causing Thursday in the Soulsbyville area, the Tuolumne County District Attorney’s Office and the California Highway Patrol said Monday.
The deceased man’s name had not been released as of Monday pending notification of family. He was identified by authorities only as a 39-year-old Angels Camp resident.
Tammi Lee Ann Truschke-Harpster, 49, was scheduled for arraignment Monday afternoon in Tuolumne County Superior Court on suspicion of murder, manslaughter, DUI causing injury, and enhancements from her prior criminal history, which includes at least two prior DUIs, one which occurred in Tuolumne County in 2020, District Attorney Cassandra Jenecke said.
The crash occurred at 5:08 p.m. Thursday on Highway 108 west of Draper Mine Road, the CHP said in a Monday morning press release.
The 39-year-old Angels Camp man was driving a 2019 Kia Optima west on Highway 108, slowing to make a left turn into a private driveway. At the same time, Samuel Luce, 30, of Sonora, was driving a 2015 Ford F-350 east on Highway 108, approaching the front of the Kia.
Truschke-Harpster was driving a 2020 Dodge Ram 2500 west on Highway 108, approaching the rear of the Kia. The Ram 2500 crashed into the rear of the Kia, pushed the Kia into the path of the F-350, and the front of the F-350 struck the right side of the Kia.
The F-350 overturned on its left side and came to rest on the south shoulder, against the Kia. Truschke-Harpster stopped the Ram 2500 on the north shoulder.
The driver of the Kia suffered major injuries and was flown to Doctors’ Medical Center in Modesto. Luce and Truschke-Harpster were both wearing seat belts. Luce was able to get out of the F-350 with no injuries, while Truschke-Harpster had minor injuries.
Truschke-Harpster was arrested on suspicion of “having caused a crash with injuries while under the influence of alcohol and drugs/medications” as well as a probation violation, the CHP said.
Truschke-Harpster was taken to Adventist Health Sonora to be treated for her minor injuries and then booked into Dambacher Detention Center. The CHP was notified the driver of the Kia died from his injuries on Saturday.
As of Monday, Truschke-Harpster was being held in custody without bail.