Woman dies from injuries in Calera accident

Matt Swearengin Managing Editor

September 3, 2013

Another person had died from injuries received in a crash last month, Calera Police said Tuesday, and also, the man accused of causing the crash has been charged with two counts of felony first-degree manslaughter.

Kelly Jean Spielman, 33, Arlington, Texas, died Sunday, according to police. She had been in critical condition since she was flown from the scene of a crash that killed her 13-year-old daughter Skyla Leigh Fisher.

Her 6-year-old son Riley remains in serious condition at a Dallas hospital.

The crash happened Aug. 25 at the Highway 69/75 and McKinley Avenue stoplight when a pickup driven by Jesus Garcia Jr., 21, Mesquite, Texas, hit Spielman’s car and slammed it into the traffic light pole.

Garcia, who was treated and released after the crash, was arrested last week after questioning.

He was charged Tuesday afternoon with two counts of first-degree manslaughter. The accident scene was reconstructed Thursday evening by Calera Police and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.

An affidavit states that Garcia was driving a Dodge pickup southbound on the highway when it hit Spielman’s Kia that was turning west onto North McKinley Avenue from northbound Highway 69/75. Fisher, who was in the front passenger seat, died at the scene. Two dogs also died and a third survived.

Authorities learned during the investigation that Garcia had been driving in a reckless manner and that prior to the crash, he left the two southbound lanes and entered the west shoulder of the highway that begins a right-turn lane, the affidavit states. He continued to drive at highway speeds when he went through the red light and his pickup struck the Kia.

Police said last week that during an interview, Garcia admitted to using marijuana the day before the crash. A blood sample was drawn from him and police are waiting on those results. According to the affidavit, a green, leafy substance believed to be marijuana was found in his pickup.

Garcia said he remembered the crash but had no explanation on why he was driving at highway speeds in the turn lane and that he did not remember the red light.

Garcia had his initial court appearance yesterday, where bond was set at $250,000 for each count. He has a preliminary hearing conference scheduled for Oct. 17.