Vehicular homicide charges pending from I-310 crash

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 5, 2005


Managing Editor

LULING — A Houston man will be charged with vehicular homicide, involving a fatality accident Monday evening atop the Hale Boggs Bridge, according to Louisiana State Police.

The wreck occurred at about 7:03 p.m., on June 27, when a 2005 Chevrolet Trailblazer SUV, rented and driven by Rolando Gomez Jr., 27, of Houston, was in the right lane when he rear-ended a 1988 Buick Century.

The impact caused the Buick to spin clockwise and strike the right guard rail on the driver’s side, while it caused the Trailblazer to roll over on its right side.

Gomez was not wearing a seat belt, was partialty ejected from the Trailblazer, was dragged for at least 100 feet and was under the rolled vehicle when he was rescued, according to Master Trooper Richard Hamann.

Gomez was transported to Charity Hospital in critical condition, and his condition has stabilized.

Gomez is also being charged with two counts of first-degree negligent injury, driving while intoxicated and reckless operation of a motor vehicle, Hamann added.

The driver of the Buick, Leona Tabor, 69, of Thibodaux, died on the scene of the accident. Her passengers, Velma Cortez, 60, and Gertrude Simoneaux, 70, are also from Thibodaux. Each sustained moderate injuries and were transported.

Gomez’s passengers were Doug Landry, 36, of Texas City, Texas, and Justine Raymond, 24, of Baytown, Texas.

Landry received moderate injuries and was transported to a hospital. Raymond refused treatment.

“The injuries wouldn’t have been as severe, if they had been wearing their seat belts,” Hamann said.