A 24-year-old Oregon man was driving 70 mph in downtown Salem with a blood alcohol level more than three times the legal limit when he crashed into a homeless camp, prosecutors said, killing four people and hospitalizing two others.
According to court records online, Enrique Rodriguez Jr. was held without bail for multiple charges, including four counts each of manslaughter or driving under the influence.
Salem Police reported that Rodriquez was taken into custody Sunday after the 2 a.m. accident.
At a bail hearing on Monday, Marion County Deputy District Attorney Katie Suver said Rodriguez lost control of his silver sedan and crashed into the camp, flattening several tents and pinning two people under his car. Suver reported that his blood alcohol content was.26%. The legal limit in the state is.08%.
Monday’s hearing became heated as several family members of the victims implored Judge Jennifer Gardner to not grant bail to Rodriquez.
“This piece of s**t trash, he’s going to go to Mexico or somewhere where we can’t take care of him,”The father of one victim spoke in court. From the back of courtroom, a member of suspect’s family called the father. “racist.”
Garner quickly intervened to calm the situation, saying: “We’re not going to do this.”
Police released the names Monday afternoon. They are: Jowand Beck, 24,Luke Kagey, 21, Joe Posada III, 54, and Rochelle Zamacona, 29.
The injured were identified as 43-year-old Derrick Hart and 18-year-old Savannah Miller, who remain hospitalized with life-threatening injuries, authorities said.
An eyewitness told authorities that Rodriquez was driving at 70 mph in 35 mph zones when his car crossed the median and crashed into the camp.
According to a probable reason statement filed by Salem police, Rodriguez was clearly intoxicated and had watery eyes, red eyes, blurred speech, and the smell of alcohol. obtained by the Statesman Journal.
Inside Edition Digital sent Rodriquez a pair of requests for comment, which were both ignored.
According to the newspaper, the suspect also drove with a suspended license.
Outside court, Rodriguez’s mother, Maria Arreze, said her son was not a killer and criticized the city for not removing the roadside camp in downtown Salem.
“Shouldn’t have been, not been homeless on that road, my kid would hurt himself, only himself. I think the city is accountable as well for this tragedy,”She said, “Weeping.”
An arraignment for Rodriquez was scheduled for April 6 on four counts of first-degree manslaughter, second and third-degree assault, DUI, and six counts of reckless endangerment