Traffic stalled on EB Loop 101/Jadiann Thompson, cbs5az.com
Carol Ann Sacca
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
A motorist accused of driving the wrong way on Loop 101 Sunday was charged with second-degree murder in the wake of the three-vehicle collision that killed a motorcyclist from Tempe.
Carol Ann Sacca, 59, was also charged with three counts of endangerment and one count of criminal damage in the crash that involved three brothers on motorcycles, according to an Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman.
Sacca's vehicle, traveling westbound in the eastbound lanes on the freeway near Cave Creek Road, struck a motorcycle driven by Scott Benson, 43, according to court records.
The collision caused Benson's brother, Mike, to take evasive action on his motorcycle and crash, too. Another brother, Bill, laid his bike down after striking Sacca's car.
Sacca admitted to a DPS drug recognition expert that she took the following medications: Morphine (60 milligrams long-acting or 30 milligrams fast-acting), SOMA (muscle relaxant), Soxipam (for itching and to relax), Trazadone (for depression), and Protonics (for esophagus).
She also said that prior to the collision she took several of these medications (including two Soma pills) around 8 p.m. Saturday. She said she fell asleep about 3 a.m. Sunday and woke up at noon, at which time she took one long-acting morphine pill.
Statements from Sacca and witnesses indicate that Sacca was northbound on State Route 51 where she took the eastbound Loop 101 ramp, where she made a U-turn and headed westbound in the eastbound HOV lane, DPS officials said.
Sacca said she knew immediately she made a mistake and panicked, that she had never been on eastbound SR 101 and needed to get to the westbound side.
She told police she traveled about a mile and did not find an exit so she made a U-turn on the highway and began traveling westbound in the eastbound lanes, knowing she was traveling the wrong direction, but not knowing what to do.
Sacca told police her intention was to find the next eastbound off ramp then exit there to get to the westbound side.
Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:43 PM EDT2013-05-22 01:43:10 GMT
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