DA George Gascón Charging Four Traffic Fatality Cases with Misdemeanor Vehicular Manslaughter

For Immediate Release
Friday, January 20, 2012

CONTACT: Stephanie Ong Stillman, DA Gascón’s Office, (415) 553-1167 or (415) 740-5134
Omid Talai, DA Gascón’s Office, (415) 553-9272

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – District Attorney George Gascón announced today that his office has filed misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter charges on four traffic fatality cases involving a MUNI driver, a UCSF shuttle bus driver, a bicyclist, and a driver wearing a cast while operating his vehicle. All four incidents occurred from July, 2011 to September 2011.

“After careful review in all four traffic cases, we have found the defendants exercised ordinary negligence warranting a misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter charge,” said District Attorney George Gascón. ““The District Attorney’s Office does not relish having to prosecute people for these incidents. All of these tragic incidents could have been avoided and we can do better as a city to avoid these tragic consequences.”

The District Attorney’s Office recently charged the MUNI fatality case that occurred on August 19, 2011. The defendant, Wallace Loggins, age 37, a MUNI driver was driving his empty bus down 18th Street in the Castro District when he made a left turn onto a narrow street (Hartford Street). Loggins did not see victim Emily Dunn walking in the crosswalk when his MUNI bus struck her. Loggins is scheduled to be arraigned on January 24.

In the traffic fatality case involving a UCSF Shuttle Bus, the driver Wallace Richardson, age 65, self surrendered on January 17, 2012. Richardson was driving a UCSF Shuttle Bus on July 14, 2011. He was distracted by a conversation before running a red light, collided with a big-rig truck, at which point the doors of the shuttle bus opened. Victim Kevin Mack, a passenger, was ejected from his seat and onto oncoming traffic. Richardson is due in court on February 6 for his arraignment.

Last November, Defendant Gregg Wilcox, age 61, was arraigned on charges stemming from a traffic fatality that occurred on September 6, 2011 at 14th and Noe Streets. Wilcox was driving with his left foot due to a walking cast he had on his right foot and when he hit pedestrian William Cox who was in the crosswalk. The Defendant was charged on November 16, 2011 and the case is scheduled to go to trial on April 13, 2012.

In the case involving Randolph Ang, age 24, a bicyclist who ran a red light and collided with victim Dionette Cherney on July 15, 2011 at Embarcadero and Mission, the Defendant was charged on November 10, 2011 and is set for a pretrial conference on January 25, 2012.

The District Attorney is asking the public to respect pedestrians’ right-of-way and to avoid behaviors that could lead to accidents. For information on pedestrian safety: http://www.walksf.org. For information on bicycle safety: http://www.sfbike.org/edu.