Fugitive back in Bay area facing DUI manslaughter

A man who fled the country to avoid charges in a fatal crash is brought back to the U.S.

TAMPA, Fla. -- Christopher Ponce has been on the run since 2013 and was recently captured in Spain. He's facing DUI manslaughter charges for a wrong way crash on I-275 that killed William Angel, 20, and hurt two others in 2012.

10News broke the news to Angel’s parents that they’re now a step closer to justice with Ponce back in the Bay area.

“Anger, because I hadn't been notified earlier by the authorities that he was going to be brought back,” says father Wade Angel.

“He calls me and he tells me and I'm like, ‘Oh my gosh!’  It again is the best thing,” says mother Lynn Angel.

This is the day parents Wade and Lynn Angel have been waiting for nearly four years. 

“Since May 9, 2013.  It’s a long time,” says Wade Angel. 

That's when investigators say Christopher Ponce cut off his ankle monitor on house arrest and escaped to Spain.  He'd been awaiting trial accused of killing the Angel's son, William, in a wrong way DUI wreck.

Finally, last summer police spotted Ponce at a bus station and captured the wanted fugitive.

It's taken eight months for the extradition. 

“Now, we can finally go after justice for William.  We had to get him here for that, and now we can,” says Wade Angel.

After their son's death, the Angels had been ready to forgive Ponce, but not now, some 5 years later they say since he's shown no remorse.

“He did this, and he should've accepted responsibility a long time ago.  It’s him being a coward, and his family enabling this that has made him this,” says Lynn Angel.

“He's here that's the first step. Today, I start the last chapter,” says Wade Angel.

How the tragic story ends will be written by the court system.  The Angels have an idea for the final sentence.

“May he rot in hell,” says Wade Angel.

Ponce will now be facing state charges for the crash: DUI manslaughter, vehicular homicide, DUI with serious bodily injury and reckless driving with serious bodily injury.  

He’s also charged with tampering with electronic monitoring equipment and failure to appear in court while on bond.  The Angels expect he’ll face federal charges as well for fleeing the country.

The Angel family, along with the two other victims have sued Ponce and his mother for auto negligence. Those cases are still ongoing.

 

© 2017 WTSP-TV


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