Los Banos mother recalls DUI crash that killed her son

September 12, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
A Los Banos mother is sharing details about the night her 10-year-old son was killed in a drunk driving accident.

Police say Jayden Thomas and his family were heading home from a football game when an underage drunk driver crashed into their car. Jayden died at the scene. Now the person who supplied the suspect with alcohol may also go to jail.

Jayden Thomas was a very outgoing child. Ten months ago he dreamed of playing pro-football someday. But his mother told Action News, last November, her family was heading home from a pee-wee football play-off game when someone crashed into their car and killed her son.

If Jayden Thomas was alive he would still be playing with his junior varsity team. The 10-year-old quarterback would be running hard, trying to score another touchdown. And his father, who is still the team's coach, would watch him every step of the way.

"As a mother it's the horriblest feeling to know that one of your children is gone," said Maria Thomas.

Last November Maria, her husband, and all three of their kids -- who fell asleep in the backseat -- were heading home from a playoff game. But at a four way stop, everything changed.

"The sound of the impact. The noise of the truck from the engine being so loud from going so fast and just out car spinning and stopping," recalled Maria, "I knew instantly that he was no longer with us."

Police say 20-year-old Justin Nappi was driving under the influence before the crash. Nappi is in jail facing charges including felony hit and run and gross vehicular manslaughter.

Action News found the complaint which shows prosecutors are also going after a 25-year-old man who they believe gave the underage Nappi alcohol.

"District Attorney's Office will prosecute anybody we can prove supplied alcohol to a minor resulting in that minor driving and causing injury or death to somebody else," said Harold Nutt, Merced County District Attorney's Office.

Investigators say Jason Midiere bought a 24 pack of Corona beer, an 18 pack of Coors Light, and a bottle of Jack Daniel's before a house party. They say Nappi, who was his roommate, drank from the stash before the collision.

"If he wouldn't have, he wouldn't have drove drunk and hit out car, I think he's just as much at fault," said Maria.

Jayden's mom said her husband keeps coaching her son's team, even after his death. They believe that's what Jayden would have wanted.

As for Midiere, he is scheduled to be in court this Friday. He faces a maximum of six months in jail.

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