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‘He just had a good kind heart’ Family remembers man killed in suspected DUI crash

Update: 12/30/21

The man accused of driving under the influence has officially been charged with murder.

Andrew Watson Hibbard, 41, of Portland, Oregon pleaded not guilty to multiple charged during his court appearance on Thursday.

Details: Suspected DUI driver pleads not guilty to murder charges for Palm Springs crash


Original Report: 12/29/21

On Monday, a 36-year-old Chula Vista man was killed when a suspected DUI driver crashed into his vehicle in downtown Palm Springs.

Police said a man driving a conversion van was speeding before colliding into the rear of a Tesla that was stopped at a red light behind three other vehicles on Palm Canyon Drive and Alejo Road. The impact from the van forced the Tesla into another vehicle causing a chain reaction of collisions.

A total of five vehicles were involved in the crash.

Leon Reynoso was the driver of the Tesla. He would be rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. He was set to celebrate his 37th birthday next week.

“He was marines he served his country he was a great father, a great brother, great uncle, he was just a great person,” said Denia Reynoso Williams, Leon's sister.

Leon Reynoso

Williams said she and Leon had traveled to the Coachella Valley to visit some friends. Leon's friends and his son's godfather, a registered nurse, were passengers in the Tesla during the crash.

“He actually tried to assist him, my brother, he told us he reached out, he climbed through the back window of the car, of what was left of, and tried to provide assistance to my brother. He grabbed something to tried to cut out of my brother of out his seatbelt," Williams said.

Six other people were injured in the wreck, including one person who sustained major injuries.

The driver of the van, a 41-year-old Oregon man, was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence. Police said he's had two previous DUI arrests before.

“I have no words for him because I can never replace my brother, he didn’t learn his lesson, and tragically for us we are on the receiving end of his carelessness, that's just not fair,” Williams said.

Williams said her brother will be greatly missed.

“He was a father to not only my daughter when he was around, but to my nephews, he just had a good kind heart,” Williams said.

The suspect arrested in this incident faces multiple charges including murder. He has not been officially charged as of Wednesday, however, he is scheduled to appear in court on Thursday. He remains behind bars on $2 million bail.

Stay with News Channel 3 for continuing updates on this case.

You can reach the newsroom through SHARE@KESQ.com.

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Marco Revuelta

Marco Revuelta es un reportero para Telemundo 15. Lo puedes mirar de Lunes a Viernes a las 6 y 11 de la noche. Conoce mas a Marco aquí.

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