Patrol: Wrong-way driver used pot

Yakima man attacked Sunnyside cop

— A Yakima man will be arraigned April 13 on charges stemming from a wrong-way crash on Interstate 82.

Luis Alonzo Torres, 24, is charged with vehicular assault, reckless endangerment, hit-and-run and third-degree assault, records show.

He appeared in Yakima County Superior Court yesterday, records show. His bail was set at $5,000.

At 2:40 a.m. Tuesday, Torres was driving eastbound in the westbound lane of Interstate 82 when his 2008 Ford Escape crashed into a westbound 2014 Freightliner truck trailer at Milepost 71, the Washington State Patrol said. The impact sent the Escape into a guardrail.

Torres and his four family members were injured and taken to Sunnyside Community Hospital, troopers said. They included his wife, Graciela Torres, 27, and three children; a 4-year-old girl, a 3-year-old boy and a 1-year-old boy. None of them wore seat belts, the patrol said.

The driver of the truck trailer, Steven M. Light, 27, of Yakima, wore a seat belt and was not injured, the patrol said.

Sunnyside Police Officer Nathan Porter was the first to reach Torres, records show. He said Torres was throwing his children over the guardrail and down a 50-foot embankment.

Torres grabbed Porter and hit him, records show. The officer hit Torres with his flashlight and used his taser.

Torres removed the taser probes and ran northbound off the interstate, records show. He was found naked in the 1000 block of North Puterbaugh Road.

“It took several officers to subdue Torres, as he was not compliant,” Trooper J. Campbell said.

He told troopers he smoked “God’s Gift,” a marijuana strain, at about midnight, records show.

His’ pulse rate, blood pressure and pupils were monitored, records show. The trooper believed he was under the influence.


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