Jury Finds Hayward Man Guilty of Vehicular Homicide

Sanpedro killed a tow truck driver who was working on lifting a car.

Press Release

(Woodland, CA) – September 11, 2015 – Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced that on September 10, 2015, a Yolo County jury returned a verdict of guilty after less than two hours of deliberation on the sole count of misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter against 73-year-old Pacifico Sanpedro of Hayward. Sanpedro had crashed an Infiniti sedan into a car attached to a tow truck on State Route 16, causing tow operator Christopher Gladden to be pinned between the towed car and his own truck, ultimately causing his death.

Evidence presented at trial showed that Christopher Gladden was completing the attachment of a Nissan sedan to his tow truck on State Route 16 on July 28, 2013, at 3:00 A.M. when Sanpedro crashed into the Nissan at full speed.

Sanpedro was on his way back from gambling at the Cache Creek Casino. As a result of the crash Gladden was pinned in-between the Nissan and the tow truck. He was air-lifted to UC Davis Medical Center where he ultimately died from his injuries. Several witnesses, in addition to reconstruction video, proved the lights of the tow truck Gladden was operating could be seen from one-half a mile away. One witness who was on the side of the road testified as to the brightness of the lights, and that all cars that were traveling the same direction as Sanpedro were stopping to move around it. Sanpedro testified that he did not see any lights before crashing into the parked Nissan. Evidence showed no tire marks or any indications Sanpedro attempted to slow down.

Deputy District Attorney Barry Shapiro prosecuted the case. “The jury’s verdict confirms Pacifico Sanpedro was criminally responsible in Christopher Gladden’s death,” said Shapiro. I am happy their decision can bring justice to his family. They have suffered enormously for something that should have been an avoidable.”

Yolo County Superior Court Judge Daniel MaGuire is scheduled to sentence Sanpedro on September 28, 2015 at 3:00 P.M. Sanpedro will be placed on misdemeanor probation and is facing up to one year in county jail.