Details Emerge In Big-Rig Crash That Forced 7-Hour Closure Of 15 Freeway

The big-rig was stolen and one suspect is in custody.


More details have been released Monday about a crash Saturday that shut down the 15 Freeway in Temecula.

The 2007 Freightliner three-axle tractor truck towing trailers was stolen from the I-15 Rainbow Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Facility just moments before a series of crashes, according to the CHP report.

Two men reportedly took control of the big rig and piloted it on the northbound 15 Freeway, the report stated. [CLICK HERE FOR AN UPDATE: CHP NOW SAYS JUST ONE MAN WAS INVOLVED.] Their bad driving proved nearly deadly. First, as the Freightliner driver merged left from the #4 lane, it collided with a 2001 Toyota Tacoma driven by 22-year-old San Jacinto resident Kyle Schlosser, who sustained moderate injuries. Schlosser’s passenger Sarah Small, 19, of Hemet was seriously injured. Both victims were transported to area hospitals, the CHP reported.

As a result of that collision, there was a chain reaction of more crashes: Schlosser’s truck rammed into a 2006 Toyota 4Runner driven by Temecula resident Anne Lennala, 56, and a 2006 Mercedes Benz driven by 39-year-old Timothy Varga, also of Temecula, was also involved, the CHP reported. Lennala sustained moderate injuries and was transported to Inland Valley Medical Center; Varga sustained minor injuries, according to the CHP report.

Rather than stop, the big rig continued northbound, but moments later collided with a 2009 Ford Taurus driven by Kristine Thrower, a 42-year-old Las Vegas resident, and a 2000 Honda Accord driven by Dio Nomany, 49, of Lompoc, the CHP reported. Thrower and her passenger, Rosanna O’Gorman, 42, also of Las Vegas, sustained moderate injuries and were transported to Inland Valley Medical Center. Nomany sustained minor injuries, according to the CHP.

The Freightliner driver finally lost control of the rig, causing it to overturn on to its side, blocking all four lanes of traffic just north of Temecula Parkway, the CHP reported.

Witnesses reported that one of the Freightliner occupants escaped from the wreckage and made a getaway in a white van. There are no descriptions of the suspect available at press time. A second man, Jerimiah Hartline, 19, of Tennessee was transported to Rancho Springs Medical Center for treatment of minor injuries and was later booked into Southwest Detention Center, the CHP reported. According to jail records, Hartline is being held on suspicion of taking a vehicle without an owner’s consent and receiving known stolen property.

According to the CHP report, the trailers hauled by the stolen Freightliner were fully loaded with strawberries that spilled onto the freeway during the crash. It took seven hours before the freeway was able to be reopened.

Julie G April 08, 2013 at 07:45 PM
thank you for doing a better job of reporting that the PE!
Cyclist April 08, 2013 at 07:45 PM
The truck was stolen from the I-15 Rainbow Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Facility. Really? This is the place where you ALWAYS see CHP and/or Border Patrol. So, this was stolen right from under the nose of law enforcement. Something in this story is not right.
Anne April 08, 2013 at 08:28 PM
It does seem like an odd place to steal a truck from? And why the heck would someone steal a truck?
marcop24 April 09, 2013 at 12:44 AM
For the awesome expedience of fleeing in a high performance big truck.
J April 09, 2013 at 02:10 AM
Wow! I still don't know what to think— he missed us by a matter of feet, and hit the Ford right next to us: I had just glanced into my rearview and saw three cars crashing right behind me, the truck tumbling in the lanes behind me. It was surreal! I had just merged to the right anticipating my upcoming exit to the 215. When I looked again I saw the semi-truck barreling towards us in the right lanes, so I merged left into the (now, totally cleared) left lanes and slowed. The truck clipped the rear of the two girls in the white Ford to the right of us and sent them shooting left, across our lane, head-on into the center divide barricade. All this while the truck lost it after passing us and ditched back sideways, sliding to a stop across all lanes, resting in the spot shown in all the pics. My wife went over to help the girls and luckily they were just a bit shook up, seat belt sores, etc. I was literally in shock for several minutes after we saw this, freezing and shaking. Me, my wife and five kids were luckily untouched as the craziness unfolded both behind and in front of us. Madness, I hope all injured will recover. Feeling so lucky... and now after seeing this guy and story—pretty upset that he put my family and the wellbeing of so many others at stake.
c s April 09, 2013 at 03:28 AM
Obviously Anne thinks everything we buy grows in the store...
Anne April 09, 2013 at 01:07 PM
What the heck c s, no reason for the dig. I am very aware the things we buy don't grow in stores - sheesh. However, I truly doubt he stole the truck for the strawberries!!! Unless of course he was wanted to use them to throw at the zombies that were chasing them.
joann rhymes April 10, 2013 at 10:15 PM
jeremiah hartlie is actually a very good and decent youg man people are talking about whats wrong with him and hes a monster how do we raise our kids in tennessee i wanna know what happend to him in california because he was fine when he left here
Right Wing Extremist April 10, 2013 at 11:05 PM
After the Texas stabbing yesterday we must demand a ban on knives.We also need a background check on their purchase! Knives kill and mame! https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=260119770791270&set=a.159888980814350.37487.159707944165787&type=1&theater
snoopy April 11, 2013 at 04:59 AM
Can we ban our tyrannical ghetto president and first lady. The white house is closed, the peoples house, by the way, so Barry hussy sotero can have a million dollar party at tax payers expense. SICKENING HYPOCRITES!!!!
On the right side April 11, 2013 at 05:42 AM
Right, get rid of the SLUG!!!


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