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Man sentenced to 100 years in I-40 deaths of 3 motorcyclists

Ivan Santos was charged with three counts of negligent vehicular homicide while intoxicated after an I-40 crash claimed the lives of three motorcyclists.

MULBERRY, Ark. — A 31-year-old Oklahoma man has been sentenced to 100 years in prison after pleading guilty to causing the deaths of three motorcyclists while he drove drunk on the wrong side of the interstate in Crawford County on May 12, 2022.

According to court documents, Santos was driving eastbound in a white 2011 Chevrolet pickup truck in the westbound lane on Interstate 40 when he struck a group of six motorcycles, one of which had a passenger. Three of those motorcyclists were pronounced dead at the scene and four others were transported to a nearby hospital where they were later released.

Arkansas State Police identified the three people who were killed in the crash. 

Those killed have been identified as:

  • Leonard Lemar, Jr. of Slidell, La. 
  • Patricia Lemar of Slidell, La.
  • Malinda Shano of Terrytown, La. 

Officials said the passenger in Santos's car was also seriously injured, with "multiple broken bones among other injuries. [The passenger] was not doing well at the scene," the arrest affidavit read. This passenger allegedly told police that the two had been using meth and pills, and officers said they smelled alcohol on Santos' breath at the scene.

Adam Walker told 5NEWS back in 2022 that he was moments away from being in the deadly crash. He said it was an explosion on impact and multiple helicopters and dozens of first responders were at the scene. 

On June 3, 2022, Arkansas State Police confirmed Santos turned himself into police in Oklahoma after an arrest warrant was filed.

Charges against Santos:

  • Three counts of negligent homicide
  • Four counts of attempted negligent homicide
  • Battery (Second degree)
  • Driving while intoxicated

A jury sentenced him to 100 years on Sept. 12, 2023, after he pleaded guilty to all counts. The jury sentenced him to the maximum for each count, Crawford County Prosecutor Kevin Holmes confirmed.

Credit: KFSM

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