SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Opening statements were graphic and emotional in the murder trial of William Cady, accused of killing three passengers while high on drugs and alcohol. The prosecution said he was speeding at more than 90 mph and laughed when the passengers asked him to slow down.
Family members had their first glimpse Wednesday of William Cady as attorneys went over vivid details of the January 2014 crash.
The 26-year-old drove a Cadillac Escalade with five others inside. The prosecution said he drove 87 to 97 mph on the transition ramp at Interstate 805 and SR-52. He overcorrected and flipped the SUV and it smashed into a pillar.
Police reported that he was under the influence of marijuana and alcohol and had a blood alcohol content level from 0.13 to 0.19. The group had been drinking at a friend's house and then went to two different bars and were kicked out for being obnoxious.
The California Highway Patrol said several of his passengers were not wearing seat belts. Three of them died in the tragic crash. Prosecution argued that Cady's vehicle became a deadly weapon and laughed when his passengers asked him to slow down.
"The defendant consumed alcohol to the point knowing he was going to get back behind the wheel of that car and he smoked marijuana knowing that he was going to get back into that car. He drove aggressively and recklessly,” said Deputy District Attorney, Mackenzie Harvey
"Four of the occupants didn't have seat belts. Mr. Becker and Cady were wearing seat belts and Gilliam wasn't wearing a seat belt,” said defense attorney, Rafael Acosta Jr.
Taylor Bernadski and Shon Gilliam died at the scene. Jeffrey Becker, who wore a seatbelt, also lost his life. Cady faces seven felony charges including murder, gross vehicular manslaughter and DUI.
Two surviving passengers will testify during the murder trial.
Cady faces 45 years to life in prison if he's convicted.