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Man arrested in connection with Arizona crash that claimed lives of Calgary couple
Published Friday, July 13, 2018 12:15PM MDT
Last Updated Friday, July 13, 2018 6:45PM MDT
Authorities in the United States have arrested a 28-year-old man for a crash that killed four people in March, including Calgarians Ron and Patti Lou Doornbos.
The pair, vacationing in Arizona, was waiting to cross the street while hiking on March 13 when an SUV jumped the curb and struck them and two other people.
Patti Lou and a couple from Iowa were killed and Ron was seriously injured. He was transported back to Foothills Hospital later in the month for treatment of a broken neck and head trauma.
Unfortunately, Ron succumbed to his injuries in mid-June.
Alex Bashaw was arrested in Ohio and has been charged with four counts of manslaughter for the deaths.
An investigation from Maricopa County Sheriff's Office shows evidence that Bashaw was using his cell phone at the time of the incident and that he was also speeding.
Bashaw will be taken back to Arizona to face charges in the incident.
Rhonda Francis, Patti Lou's sister, said that news of the charges bring relief after the three months of stress.
"I didn't want to see him get away with a simple traffic violation. There was talk that that might be the case. Had he been going just two or three miles per hour faster, he would have been instantly charged with criminal charges."
She says that the past three months has been one thing after another and the charges are a step in the right direction.
"He has to be held accountable. He has some criminal activity, he is known to police, he's made a lot of bad choices in his life and hopefully this will stop him from making further bad choices."
Francis adds that she hopes this case will also send a strong message about the dangers of distracted driving, not just for her family, but for families throughout North America.
A representative from the family is expected to attend the court hearings in Arizona.