Suspected drunken driver causes deadly wreck with kids in car

THURSTON COUNTY, Wash. — A suspected drunken driver involved in a deadly motorcycle crash made his first appearance in court Wednesday.

The Washington State Patrol said Christopher Wade, 36, had his three young kids in the car when he hit and killed a motorcyclist.

“Now an innocent man is dead,” said Evelyn Hernandez.

Family members said Danny Knowles, 33, was hit and killed Tuesday night in Lacey.

Officers said Wade confessed to drinking four tallboys before he got behind the wheel of his red Mazda. He had his three children in the car, ages 11, 8 and 1.  The 8-year-old was sent to the hospital with cuts and a concussion.

Hernandez lives down the road.

She saw the crash, called 911 and heard Wade’s kids crying out to him.

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“He just kept saying, ‘Daddy, don’t go to jail, Daddy don’t die,’ and that was very heartbreaking for me, because I have an 8-year-old daughter and I just can’t imagine those words coming out of her,” said Hernandez.

In court Wednesday, Wade sobbed and kept his head down as he faced a judge on charges of vehicular homicide and vehicular assault.

Officers said Wade admitted have been shouldn’t be driving and didn’t see the motorcycle when he turned from SR 510 onto Rockcress Drive, causing the deadly crash.

“It was just something that I never will be able to forget,” said Hernandez.

Wade’s bail is set at $100,000.

His next scheduled court date is April 23.

A GoFundMe has been set up to assists Knowles' family.