NEWHALL – A 46-year-old Lancaster man and his two young children were killed early Monday morning when their vehicle rear-ended a big rig parked off Interstate 5.
Alan Dean Edwards and his children, 9-year-old Erick and 5-year-old Alona, died in a collision that happened around 12:59 a.m. Monday, Dec. 8, on the southbound side of Interstate 5 at the Whitaker Brake Check area, authorities said.
The family was in a 1997 Honda Accord traveling southbound on I-5, when the vehicle entered the brake check area and crashed into the back of a 2006 Freightliner towing a 2003 utility semi-trailer, according to a California Highway Patrol report. The big rig was legally parked inside the brake check area with its driver – 45-year-old Balbir Singh of Yuba City— asleep in the sleeper berth, the CHP report states.
“For unknown reasons the driver of the Honda Accord veered left as it approached the big rig and struck the rear of the big rig prior to any evasive action by the driver,” the CHP report states. “The Honda was wedged underneath the big rig upon arrival of emergency personnel.”
Edwards and the two children were pronounced dead at the scene. Singh sustained no injuries in the collision.
The fatal crash was a horrific ending to the search for the young children. In a post shared with The AV Times and many local residents on Facebook, friends of the children’s mother had pleaded for help in finding the children, believed to be kidnapped by their father. Edwards was supposed to return the children to his ex-wife Sunday, but he had failed to do so, according to the Facebook post.
The post gave a description of Edwards, the children, and the vehicle and asked readers to be on the lookout and to call authorities with any information.
UPDATE: Loved ones have established an online fundraiser to assist the children’s mother. To donate to this effort, visit http://www.gofundme.com/iftuzk.
UPDATED 12/9/14: MURDER-SUICIDE INVESTIGATION UNDERWAY
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide detectives released a statement Tuesday afternoon regarding the crash. Detectives believe Edwards deliberately rammed his Honda Accord into the back of the parked big rig at a high rate of speed without making any attempts to stop. Read the full statement below:
On Monday, December 8, 2014 at approximately 9 a.m., Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Detectives responded to a traffic collision investigation on the 5 Freeway at Templin Highway in Castaic.
The collision that occurred early Monday morning involving a male 46-year-old adult and an eight-year-old male and a five-year-old female was initially investigated by the California Highway Patrol. According to Sheriff’s Detectives, preliminary information indicates that the adult male suspect deliberately collided with a parked tractor trailer at a high rate of speed without making any attempts to stop, killing himself and two victims in the car.
The suspect and his ex-wife were involved in a custody battle. The suspect had picked up the kids on Friday, December 5, 2014 for a scheduled visit and when he didn’t return on Sunday, December 7, 2014, the wife made a missing persons report to Santa Clarita Station.The investigation is still on-going.