Convicted Felon to Stand Trial After Crashing Vehicle into House

Convicted Felon to Stand Trial After Crashing Vehicle into House


Indio, CA

A convicted felon who was allegedly under the influence of alcohol when he crashed his pickup truck into a house, injuring a 10-year-old- boy and two adults as well as himself, must stand trial on drunken driving charges, a judge ruled today.

Juan Martinez Jr. of Indio is charged with DUI, with sentence-enhancing allegations of causing great bodily injury. The 45-year-old defendant is due back in an Indio courtroom on Aug. 25 for arraignment.

Martinez was allegedly drunk when he left a family member’s home shortly before 6 p.m. on March 20 and crashed his 1998 Chevrolet pickup truck into a house in the 83100 block of East Circle Drive.

He crashed into the house two additional times as he tried to drive away, Indio police Sgt. Daniel Marshall alleged. The last crash pushed a parked vehicle into the home’s carport, which collapsed, the sergeant said.

A 10-year-old boy and a man were airlifted to a hospital with what turned out to be non-life-threatening injuries, and a woman was treated at the scene for minor injuries. All three had been inside the home.

Martinez, who was also injured in the crash, was detained by neighbors until police arrived. His arraignment was delayed three times as he recovered from his injuries at a hospital.

According to court records, he has prior felony convictions for burglary and child endangerment.