Items found belonged to missing California family

Share

In California, a person is legally drunk if they have a BAC of.08 or higher.

Wife Sarah Hart and two of the dead children had "an ingredient that's commonly found in [the over-the-counter allergy medication] Benadryl", in their systems when they perished, but it's not clear what authorities are making of that finding, the captain added.

The Harts and three of their children were found dead after the vehicle plunged into the Pacific Ocean on March 26 Two more are missing and another body has been found but not identified. Three other children are missing, but presumed dead.

On Thursday, authorities concluded the vehicle was that of the Thottapilly family after recovering a number of personal items from the river.

Members of the Hart family pictured at the annual celebration of "The Goonies" movie in Astoria.

They were last heard from the day before authorities received reports of a maroon Honda Pilot - the same color and make of the Thottapillys' SUV - submerging into the swollen river along US Highway 101 north of Leggett, according to local media reports. The friend was unable to reach her after that. Her therapist explained she would be living with a new family - all of her belongings had already been removed from the Hart family home.

Long before the crash, Sarah Hart pleaded guilty in 2011 to a domestic assault charge in Minnesota over what she said was a spanking given to one of her children. Officials believe the child was from the missing family's SUV.

Once the three children and a fourth older child, Dontay, were taken by Texas' Department of Family and Protective Services, they were temporarily placed with their aunt, Priscilla Celestine.

The older victims suffered severe burn wounds while the children, who were sleeping upstairs, died of smoke inhalation, police said. Police spokesperson Sergeant Mthokozisi Ngobese said they were investigating five cases of murder and a case of arson.

Sheriff Tom Allman said in a television interview earlier this month that Jennifer Hart "is the woman that we believe was driving the vehicle when it crashed".

He noted the Yukon had traveled some 23 metres along an unpaved roadside pullout before running off the cliff, leaving behind no skid or brake marks, indicating the vehicle may have been driven off the cliff intentionally.

"These items were of a personal nature and will not be described further at this time, but it does confirm the fact the vehicle that was seen going into the river was that of the Thottapilly family", the California Highway Patrol said.

The chamber introduced the program past year to recognize outstanding business women in the community.

Share