September 19, 2013 at 2:45 PM
Suspect in fatal I-405 crash charged with vehicular homicide
A Woodinville man who reportedly told authorities he was high on methamphetamine and heroin when he crashed into a 22-year-old Federal Way man’s car on Interstate 405 last week, killing him, has been charged in King County Superior Court.
Samuel C. Sampson was charged Wednesday with vehicular homicide, vehicular assault and reckless driving. Sampson, 27, remains at the King County Jail in lieu of $1 million bail. If convicted, he faces nearly 11 years in prison.
According to charges: Sampson was weaving through traffic in his wife’s Audi RS4, hitting speeds nearing 120 mph that night. A relative of Sampson’s wife told The Times that the couple had been arguing and that she forced her way into the car to go with him. Sampson told the State Patrol that he had unbuckled his wife’s seatbelt while he was driving.
Sampson plowed into the back of Ian Beckford’s car, causing the BMW to catch on fire. Authorities said Beckford died while trapped inside.
Two other vehicles were struck in the chaos. None of the occupants was seriously hurt, authorities said.
Beckford was driving home from a day of swimming, water-skiing and enjoying the sunshine at Lake Sammamish when he was killed.
Sampson told investigators that he had injected methamphetamine for the first time before the crash and had also used heroin, charges said. Toxicology test results have not been released.
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The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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