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Driver Who Killed Family of 5 to be Sentenced

VICTORVILLE– ( On Mother’s day 2014 Victor Valley residents witnessed a horrific event on the corner of Main Street and Balsam Avenue in Hesperia.

An entire family of five left their home early on the morning May 11, 2014 to celebrate their daughter Cindy’s 4th birthday at Disneyland. The family was just blocks from their Hesperia home when they stopped at the stop sign heading southbound on Balsam Road preparing to turn right onto Main Street.

Joshua Caleb Smith, was driving a white delivery van eastbound on Main Street when, according to authorities, he briefly dozed off and crossed into westbound lanes causing him to collide into the Honda Accord carrying the family of five. The van overturned, hitting a nearby telephone pole causing the van to land on the Honda.

Three of the vehicle occupants of the vehicle were dead at the scene, one male adult and one male juvenile were extricated from the vehicle and both were transported to local hospitals, but later died as a result of their injuries. The five victims 30-year-old Gerardo Cruz Jimenez, 25-year-old Angelica Garcia, 3-year-old Cindy Jimenez Garcia, 2-year-old Ivan Jimenez Garcia, and 9-year-old Freddy Garcia all died as a result of the collision. Smith was uninjured in the collision.

Several weeks later it was determined that drowsiness from prescription drugs caused Smith to become drowsy ultimately causing the collision.

On April 13, 2015, nearly a year after the collision, Smith was charged with five counts of vehicular manslaughter. On May 11, 2015, the one year anniversary of the tragic collision, Smith via his attorney put in a not guilty plea.

Smith changed his plea at a October 14th pre-trial hearing as part of a plea bargain, pleading guilty to the five misdemeanor charges. Per court records, Smith is due at the Victorville Superior Court for sentencing at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, October 30th.  Smith, who has remained out of custody, can face up to 5 years in prison.

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