Meth pipes, butane canister found in DUI suspect’s van following deadly motorcycle crash in Goodyear

Police arrested Christopher Clark, 40, after he reportedly ran a red light and caused a deadly...
Police arrested Christopher Clark, 40, after he reportedly ran a red light and caused a deadly crash in Goodyear.(Arizona's Family)
Published: Sep. 14, 2022 at 2:10 PM MST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

GOODYEAR, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - A man is facing manslaughter and other charges after a crash led to the death of a 19-year-old motorcycle rider early Tuesday in Goodyear.

Around 1:52 a.m. Tuesday, Goodyear police responded to I-10 and Pebble Creek Parkway for an accident involving a motorcycle and a van. A 19-year-old motorcycle driver, identified as Carson Smith, hit the side of Clark’s van and was seriously injured. Smith was taken to a hospital where he later died.

Three witnesses confirmed with police that the van driver, later identified as 40-year-old Christopher Clark, ran the light and pulled out in front of the motorcycle. Brake tracks from the motorcycle showed that Smith tried to brake and avoid the van but wasn’t able to stop. There was significant damage to the side door of the van where his helmet made hit. The van then also hit a truck saystopped in the left-hand turning lane of the intersection.

According to court documents, Clark told officers that before the crash he was sleeping in his van at a nearby Home Depot when he was woken up by a security guard who told him to leave because the police were coming. When Clark tried to leave, he said the guard “chased” his van in a Camaro while flashing his lights. Clark said he had first stopped at the red light at the intersection, but when he saw someone get out of the Camaro and approach the van, he said he feared for his life and decided to run the red light. Another driver told officers that they saw a Camaro stop behind the van and that someone got out and approach.

After his arrest, Clark told the officers that he had one 12 oz. can of Smirnoff around noon that day and that he had a long history of meth and opioid use. He claimed he had not taken either in at least a week but had smoked marijuana earlier in the day. He asked officers if he could be taken to a hospital to be checked out.

During the investigation, officers found multiple glass pipes, a butane canister, and several lighters in Clark’s van. According to court documents, because Clark has a history of substance abuse, drove impaired, has no community ties, lives out of his van, caused a deadly crash, and made statements about leaving the state, officers considered him high risk.

He was booked on various counts, including manslaughter, aggravated assault of serious physical injury, DUI for drugs, DUI for alcohol, and reckless driving. His bond was set at $300,000.