Father charged with vehicular homicide in 7-year-old’s death

EVERETT — The father of a 7-year-old boy killed in a 2012 crash is now charged with vehicular homicide.

Prosecutors allege that John Alves, 32, was racing another car on Evergreen Way when he lost control of his BMW. The sports car smashed into an oncoming minivan. Josiah Alves, a second-grader, was riding in the front passenger seat. He died at the scene.

Prosecutors earlier this month filed a vehicular homicide charge against the boy’s father, alleging that he disregarded the safety of others. Police believe Alves was high at the time of the crash. He later tested positive for marijuana, court papers said.

The Everett man faces nearly two years in prison if convicted. Alves has a 2002 felony conviction for methamphetamine possession.

Prosecutors also have charged Jacob Friesen with vehicular homicide in connection with the Oct. 30, 2012, crash. They allege that Friesen was the driver of the second car, racing Alves.

Friesen, also driving a BMW, was stopped at a red light on Evergreen Way at 75th Street SE. Alves was stopped behind him. Witnesses told detectives that both men sped quickly through the intersection once the light turned green.

Alves allegedly was weaving in and out of traffic, trying to overtake Friesen, court papers said. Witnesses reported that Friesen sped up in an apparent attempt to stay ahead of Alves and prevent him from passing, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Tobin Darrow wrote.

Alves reportedly swerved into Friesen’s lane. The back of his car struck the front of Friesen’s BMW. The force of the crash caused Alves to lose control of his car. He ended up sliding broadside into an oncoming minivan. The van struck the passenger side of the Everett man’s car.

Josiah died of head injuries.

Detectives reconstructed the crash scene and estimated that both men were driving at least 50 mph when their cars collided, Darrow wrote.

Alves reportedly told police that he’d smoked marijuana the day before the crash. He also told cops that he allowed Josiah to ride in the front seat as a reward.

Josiah was a second-grader at Madison Elementary School.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463, hefley@heraldnet.com.

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