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“Next thing you know, they’re gone in an instant,” Family seeking damages against Edmond company

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Updated 1/24/15 at 3:22 p.m.

Rocky Baca turned himself in to authorities in Salt Lake City Friday.

rocky baca

EDMOND, Okla.-- Two teachers killed in a head on collision, while the man who hit them is not behind bars. Rocky Baca faces two manslaughter charges, and now both he and the company he worked for could be in more trouble.

 

"First year teachers in the prime of their lives, and the next thing you know, they're gone in an instant," said Jason Roselius, attorney for Heather Wilson's family, one of the teachers killed in the wreck.

It's been more than three months since 37-year-old Rocky Baca veered into incoming traffic, killing Jennifer Briggs and Heather Wilson on State Highway 33. The two women were teachers at Guthrie Junior High School.

"He was traveling the wrong direction in their lane," said Oklahoma Highway Patrol Lt. Betsy Randolph, speaking on the wreck when the news broke last October. "They went left to avoid him and they hit head on."

A police affidavit shows Baca admitted to smoking synthetic marijuana before leaving for work. He now faces two first degree manslaughter charges, and a civil lawsuit filed by Heather's family earlier this week.

"We are seeking damages...for the loss of Heather, to compensate her family for what they've lost," said Roselius.

But also named in the suit, Core Transit Inc. based out of Edmond.

The company is known for transporting medical patients to various appointments with a wide array of vehicles, one of which Baca was driving that fateful morning.

"If you engage in this kind of conduct, and you endanger the lives of our citizens here in Oklahoma, there's gonna be a price to be paid," said Roselius.

The suit claims Baca has a history of "engaging in risky, unsafe, and illegal behavior," and that Core Transit was negligent when they hired him in the first place.

"We're all for business, but it has to be done safely, it has to be done in a proper manner," noted Roselius. "It certainly shouldn't be done at the expense of our safety on these highways."

Core Transit, Inc. did not return KFOR's request for comment.

An arrest warrant for Baca was issued by Payne County officials on January 14th.

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