Hundreds of bicyclists were expected to meet Monday morning at an Irvine bicycle store to ride in memory of an employee who was killed while riding his bicycle on Santiago Canyon Road one year ago.
They planned to meet at 6:30 a.m. at Jax’s bicycles, 14210 Culver Drive, and begin riding at about 7 a.m. to the spot at Santiago Canyon and Old Dump roads where 21-year-old Joseph Robinson died on Feb. 2, 2014. There will be a memorial ceremony at the site attended by his family and friends, said Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Steve Concialdi.
“Last year on Super Bowl Sunday, OCFA Battalion Chief Marc Stone was driving to work around 7 a.m. on Santiago Canyon Road when he spotted a vehicle driving toward him in the opposing lanes with heavy front end damage and a windshield that was shattered. It seemed odd and he thought the driver had hit a deer,” the captain said.
Stone continued to look for what the driver might have hit and noticed a shoe in the road about two miles farther. He made a U-turn and found Robinson lying on the other side of the guard rail in critical condition, Concialdi said.
“Tragically, the cyclist succumbed to his injuries while Stone was rendering aid,” Concialdi said.
Orange County sheriff’s deputies found Sommer Gonzales, now 19, and her vehicle in a parking lot in Rancho Santa Margarita about an hour after the crash, said the Orange County District Attorney’s Farrah Emami.
“Gonzales is accused of showing objective signs of being under the influence of a controlled substance and had methamphetamine and a pipe in her possession,” Emami said. Gonzales allegedly tested positive for methamphetamine in her blood.
She was charged with one felony count each of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence while intoxicated, driving under the influence of drugs causing bodily injury, hit and run with death and possession of a controlled substance. She also was charged with one misdemeanor count of possessing drug paraphernalia and sentencing enhancement allegations of inflicting great bodily injury and fleeing the scene of a crime, Emami said.
If convicted as charged, she faces 15 years and eight months in state prison for the felonies and one year and six months in the Orange County jail for the misdemeanors.
Gonzales remains in the Central Women’s Jail with a Superior Court appearance set for Tuesday, Feb. 3
—City News Service
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