As friends and co-workers grieved Wednesday for a CarMax salesman who died during a test drive, authorities announced the arrest of the car's driver who faces vehicular manslaughter and DUI charges.
Warren Smale, 43, of Montclair, was killed Tuesday while riding in a red Chevrolet Corvette during a test drive in Ontario, police said. The man behind the wheel test driving the car was Alex Demetro, 28, authorities said. He had allegedly been using drugs when he crashed into a tree at Mercedes Drive and Concours Street at 12:46 p.m., according to Ontario police. He had possibly been going up to 70 mph.
"There's no way to really describe somebody like this," said Smale's father, Dennis. "He knew he had the drugs and he knew he couldn't handle a car and he shouldn't have been showing off."
A cousin of Demetro reacted to the news.
"On behalf of the Demetro family, we offer our deepest condolences to the family of Warren Smale," said the cousin, Paul Demetro. "Our thoughts and prayers are with them."
He offered no further comment.
Smale grew up in Pennsylvania and was loved by his family, especially his mother, Shirley, his father said.
He moved to California so he could find a good job. And that's exactly what they say he did when he started working at the Ontario CarMax as a sales associate.
"Today is an incredibly sad day for the CarMax family," company officials said in a statement. "Our hearts and prayers go out to our associate's family. CarMax is working closely with the authorities on the investigation."