A Whittier man accused of taking part in a street race that caused a multi-vehicle pileup on the Golden State (5) Freeway in Commerce, killing three people, was charged Tuesday with three counts of second-degree murder.
Dealio Lockhart, 35, was also charged with four counts of reckless driving on a highway causing injury. He is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon in downtown Los Angeles.
Lockhart is accused of driving a Dodge Challenger during a street race against someone in a Dodge Charger just after midnight Saturday morning.
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California Highway Patrol officials said the two Dodge muscle cars were being driven aggressively and were jockeying for position near the Citadel Outlet Mall. When Lockhart approached a vehicle moving at normal freeway speed ahead of him, he tried to swerve around it but wound up losing control of his car and hitting a UPS 18-wheeler, which went airborne, over the center median, and sheared off the top of the oncoming Nissan with four people inside, according to the CHP.
The truck came to rest on top of a red Ford Explorer on the northbound side of the freeway, north of Washington Boulevard, and immediately burst into flames. Debris from the collision also struck a Chevrolet Tahoe and Chevrolet Silverado, which were on the northbound side.
The UPS driver, Scott Treadway, 52, of Mira Loma, was killed in the crash. Two people in the Nissan also died -- Michelle Littlefield, 19, and Brian Lewandowski, 18, both of Valencia. Lewandowski was the son of a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department homicide detective. The other two people in the Nissan were critically injured.
Tony Miramontes, 21, of Van Nuys, was last reported to be in a coma at St. Francis Medical Center in Lynwood, while Alfonso Morillo was hospitalized in critical condition. Miramontes was driving the Nissan. Two other people -- a man and a woman -- were also injured in the pileup. The driver of the Charger remains at large. Lockhart faces up to life in prison if convicted, according to the District Attorney's Office.