Murder conviction in Clovis man's death

The Fresno BeeNovember 9, 2013 

A Bakersfield man with a history of dangerous driving was convicted of second-degree murder Friday for causing a deadly accident at a construction site while under the influence of prescription drugs.

Jerad Cross, 32, plowed a pickup into a vehicle driven by Clovis resident Richard Gamez, 45, who was stopped at a construction site near Paso Robles on Nov. 7, 2012. The impact rammed Gamez into a semitrailer stopped in front of him.

Cross, whose driving record included three at-fault accidents, five speeding tickets and a previous DUI, was driving with a suspended license at the time.

Deputy District Attorney Matt Kraut said the prescription medication Cross had taken that morning included a warning not to drive. Yet he still took the wheel of a truck that was hauling two large storage containers.

Cross' murder conviction — a rarity in vehicular death cases — came after a two-week jury trial, which included testimony from the defendant and witnesses who were at the site.

Gamez is survived by a wife, who attended the trial, and a son.

Cross, who also was convicted of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, driving with a suspended license and possession of drug paraphernalia, faces a possible life prison term when he is sentenced Dec. 18.

 

The Fresno Bee is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service