Suspected Drunken Driver Charged with Murder in Pomona Crash That Killed 6-Year-Old Upland Boy
A 19-year-old man who was just convicted of DUI last year faces murder and other charges in connection with a wrong-way collision in Pomona that killed a 6-year-old Upland boy and left his father critically injured earlier this week, authorities said.
Prosecutors issued an arrest warrant Thursday for Franky Provencio of Pomona, who remained hospitalized due to injuries he suffered in Tuesday afternoon’s head-on collision along White Avenue, between Arrow Highway and McKinley Avenue, the Pomona Police Department said in a written statement.
He was driving a 2001 GMC Yukon north on White when he crossed into opposing traffic lanes and crashed into a pickup truck heading south, police said.
Julian Anthony George, 6, of Upland, who was riding as a passenger in the pickup truck, died at the scene of the crash, Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said.
His father, Peter George, was hospitalized in critical condition, officials said. He remained in critical condition Thursday.
Provencio and a passenger who was riding in his SUV were also taken to hospitals for treatment. Provencio was believed to be drunk, and possibly high on drugs, as well, police said. The passenger was treated and released, while Provencio was still being treated for his injuries on Thursday.
The suspect was driving on a suspended license and was already on probation for a 2018 DUI conviction at the time of the crash, officials said. Because of his prior DUI conviction, prosecutors elected to charge Provencio with murder.
He also faces charges of DUI causing death with a prior conviction, possession of a controlled substance and violating his probation, police said.
He was expected to be formally arrested once released from the hospital, officials said.
“Investigation also revealed the driver of the southbound vehicle had also consumed alcohol prior to the collision,” according to the police statement. “His level of intoxication at the time of the collision is not yet known and (Major Accident Investigation Team) investigators are still following up.”
The boy killed in the crash was not secured in a child safety seat, as is required by state law for kids under 8 years old or under 4 feet 9 inches tall, police said.
The investigation remained ongoing. Anyone with information can reach Pomona police traffic investigators at 909-802-7741, or 909-620-2048. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
A fund to benefit the victims’ family has been established online.