A Farmington man has been charged with careless driving in connection with a fatal two-vehicle crash on Cedar Avenue in Apple Valley.
According to the Dakota County Attorney’s Office, 32-year-old Salomon G. Adorno lost control of the GMC Savana van he was driving southbound on Cedar Avenue the evening of Dec. 2, 2012, and collided with a guard rail near McAndrews Road.
The collision sent the GMC van airborne, and it landed on its side in one of the northbound lanes on Cedar. A southbound Chevrolet Tahoe then collided with Adorno’s overturned vehicle.
The passenger in the front seat of Adorno’s van – 26-year-old Inocencio Munoz-Gutierrez – died as a result of his injuries. Adorno suffered non-life-threatening injuries in the crash.
The three occupants of the Chevrolet Tahoe sustained minor injuries – all three complained of chest pain from their seatbelts, and one of the occupants reported an abrasion on her neck.
A witness told police that the GMC Savana had swerved slightly to the right, then swerved abruptly to the left as if the driver was over-correcting, before crashing into the guard rail surrounding a bridge pillar at McAndrews Road.
Adorno, who was charged Aug. 15, faces a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine if convicted of the misdemeanor careless driving charge.
Adorno was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident, according to the Dakota County Attorney’s Office. A felony charge of criminal vehicular homicide was not brought because it was determined gross negligence did not occur.
“This appears to be another tragic example of distracted driving that has claimed a life on our state’s roads,” Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom said.
Adorno is expected to make his first court appearance in three to four weeks.