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DUI charges filed against box truck driver who killed five cyclists

Jordan Barson was charged with driving under the influence resulting in death.

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The driver of a box truck who struck and killed five cyclists last week was charged with driving under the influence resulting in death, reports an NBC affiliate in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Clark County District Attorney’s office filed a criminal complaint against Jordan Barson for operating a vehicle with methamphetamine in his system last Thursday when he drove off the road and onto the shoulder where he struck five cyclists and an accompanying support vehicle.

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District Attorney Steve Wolfson said in a statement: “I have said hundreds of times, to countless people, making the choice to get behind the wheel of a car when you are intoxicated is reckless. Those actions are unacceptable, and they have consequences.”

A sixth cyclist was struck and seriously injured. The drive of the support vehicle was also seriously injured as a result of the collision.

According to reports, Barson left the roadway before hitting the group of cyclists, who were riding behind a support vehicle on the shoulder of the road. The truck that Barson was operating then struck the support vehicle and hit a second group of cyclists that was in front of the car. The incident occurred on U.S. 95, approximately 60 miles south of Las Vegas on Thursday, December 10.

Clark County District Attorney’s office filed a criminal complaint against Jordan Barson for operating a vehicle with methamphetamine in his system. Photo: Mohave County Sheriff’s Office

Barson was charged with five counts of DUI resulting in death, five counts of reckless driving resulting in death, and one count of DUI resulting in substantial bodily harm according to news sources.

He is currently in police custody in Mohave County, Arizona, and awaits extradition to Clarke County, Nevada.

The story generated national headlines and waves of anger and sadness within the U.S cycling community after it broke. The cyclists were participating in an annual organized 130-mile ride from Henderson, Nevada to Nipton, California, and back. They were riding on the shoulder, and were supported by a vehicle for the entire ride.

Clay Weeks, an employee at Las Vegas bicycle shop Pro Cyclery, told The New York Times that the cycling community was “devastated.”

“Hopefully this opens eyes for people and will make them more vigilant of cyclists on the road because stuff like this happens way too often in the community,” Weeks said.

A relief fund has been created for the families of the victims: Erin Michelle Ray, Girard Nivea, Tom Trauger, Aksoy Ahmet, and Mike Murray. To learn more and make a donation, visit lasvegascyclistmemorial.com.