I-Team: Truck driver involved in fatal cyclist crash had massive amount of meth in system

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Crash last week killed 5 cyclists on U.S. 95

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Documents obtained Thursday by the I-Team show Jordan Barson, 45, the man accused of crashing a box truck into a group of cyclists and killing 5, told investigators he had ingested methamphetamine the night before the crash.

The documents also indicate Barson fell asleep after the crash and had nine times the legal limit of methamphetamine in his system.

Barson struck the bicyclists and an escort vehicle as the group traveled south on US 95 toward Arizona, according to authorities. The cyclists were struck from behind as the truck crossed into the bicycle lane.

The crash happened Dec. 10 between Boulder City and Searchlight, about 60 miles outside of Las Vegas. The speed limit on that section of the highway is 75 mph.

At the crash site, a trooper said “he had to stop the [field sobriety tests] due to the emotional state of Barson and interference from the Mercy Air helicopter,” documents said.

Two hours after the crash, Barson submitted to a blood draw at an area hospital. Blood results showed Barson had 948 nanograms per milliliter of methamphetamine in his blood, documents said. The limit, 100 nanograms per milliliter, is the bar prosecutors must show to prove impairment.

Jordan Alexander Barson (Mohave County Sheriff’s Office)

During an in-person interview on Monday, Barson admitted to consuming methamphetamine around 4 p.m. on Dec. 9, one day before the crash. He told troopers he did not sleep well but continued his driving route from Arizona to Las Vegas.

Barson told investigators he fell asleep one to two minutes at the time of the crash, documents said.

Barson faces charges of five counts of DUI resulting in death (2-20 years in prison, per count) and five counts of Reckless Driving resulting in death (1-6 years in prison, per count). Other charges include one count of DUI resulting in substantial bodily harm (2-20 years in prison) and one count of Reckless Driving resulting in substantial bodily harm (1-6 years in prison). 

Barson remained at an Arizona jail Thursday awaiting extradition to Nevada.

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