Court documents: suspect in deadly crash tried to move passenger's body into driver seat

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- A man who was arrested in connection with a deadly crash in South Phoenix tried to move the the body of a crash victim into the driver seat, according to court documents.

The man, identified as 26-year-old Jaime Renee Garcia, has been charged with a count of second degree murder with extreme indifference to life. According to a Phoenix Police statement released earlier in November, the incident took place on the 6100 block of W. Dobbins Road in South Phoenix, at a construction site for the Loop 202 freeway expansion.

In the initial news release by Phoenix Police, official identified 28-year-old Gregory James, who was pronounced dead at the scene, as the driver. The car, according to officials, entered a closed roadway to cut through the construction site, and hit a parked Caterpillar excavator.

According to police officials on Wednesday, detectives have since developed probable cause that the driver was actually Garcia. He was arrested on Tuesday.

Court documents have released further details on what happened. Garcia initially told officers that he and James were leaving a bar on the 600 block of Dobbins, and that James sped up the truck, having mistaken a fire truck or ambulance for a police car.

Further investigations, according to court documents, discovered that the truck, identified as a 2000 Chevrolet 2500 pickup, was registered to Garcia, and that there was severe intrusion into the passenger compartment that was consistent with the fatal injuries James suffered to the right side of his body. In addition, James' body was noted to have been found in an unnatural position, as if he was repositioned after the crash.

Garcia, according to court documents, had a Blood Alcohol Content of 0.156 at the time, and blood tests also revealed he was further impaired by THC.