KNIGHTS LANDING, Calif. —
The man accused of killing three in a drunk driving crash in Knights Landing is facing new charges from the federal government.
The Eastern District of California charged Ismael Huazo-Jardinez with two counts of “alien in possession of a firearm while unlawfully in the United States,” according to court documents obtained by ABC10. The charges were filed Friday.
Huazo-Jardinez was originally arrested May 4 for vehicular manslaughter and felony DUI after he crashed his Chevrolet Avalanche into a trailer where a family of four was sleeping. Three of those family members -- 38-year-old Jose Pacheco, 34-year-old Anna Pacheco and their 10-year-old son Angel Pacheco were killed. Mariana, the Pacheco’s 11-year-old daughter, was taken to the hospital in critical condition and later released.
California Highway Patrol (CHP) searched Huazo-Jardinez’s Chevrolet Avalanche May 8 while it was impounded, according to the complaint. Officers found an unloaded black handgun in the center console of the car. The handgun had been reported stolen to the Boise Police Department on December 29, 2017.
The complaint said law enforcement also searched Huazo-Jardinez’s home May 24 and found a second firearm. Officers believe the gun was stolen but not reported because it is registered to someone in Colusa County.
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Cameron King, deputy district attorney for the Sutter County District Attorney’s Office, said Huazo-Jardinez admitted he was in the country illegally and agreed to be deported to Mexico during a hearing on his immigration status May 29.
Huazo-Jardinez was previously caught by Border Patrol agents while in Arizona and granted voluntary return to Mexico in February 2011, according to ICE.
“He would have been deported by no later than June 3 except the U.S. Attorney’s Office filed their gun charges on May 31,” King said. “That means they took him from ICE’s custody to U.S. Marshal’s custody.”
King said he filed a complaint May 28 charging Huazo-Jardinez with three counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and two counts of driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury. For each of the DUI counts, there are four enhancing allegations of causing great bodily injury or death -- one for each member of the Pacheco family.
A preliminary alcohol screening test registered Huazo-Jardinez’s blood alcohol content at .122, according to the federal complaint.
“He will stand trial on the gun charges in federal court before he’s brought to state court,” King said.
King said his office is working closely with the U.S. Attorney’s Office to serve justice.
“Hopefully they’ll get a conviction and then he’ll be sentenced,” King said. “And hopefully it will be long enough so we can bring him back here to face his charges.”
Huazo-Jardinez has a hearing scheduled for June 17.