Three members of a Payson family returning from a shopping trip to the Valley were killed, while two others were injured, in a collision at the intersection of the Bush and Beeline highways at 7:30 p.m. July 24 Department of Public Safety Officer Frank Valenzuela said.
Pernilla Pallin Goddard, 39 and Simon Pallin Goddard, 14, died at the scene of the accident.
William Goddard, 13, was transported to Phoenix St. Joseph's hospital where he died about 11:30 p.m.
David M. Goddard, 39, and Alexandrea Goddard, 12, were transported to Maricopa Medical Center. Alexandrea is being treated for abdominal trauma, father, David, was treated for pulmonary trauma and was released, hospital reports showed.
The accident occurred after 31-year-old Rigoberto Arrazola of Phoenix, suspected of driving drunk, failed to yield to oncoming traffic, Valenzuela said.
Arrazola's sport utility vehicle collided with the Goddards' Chevrolet Tahoe, forcing the vehicle off the road where it rolled several times killing mother, Pernilla and son, Simon, Valenzuela said. Family members were wearing seat belts.
David Goddard said he saw Arrazola exiting on to the Beeline from Bush Highway, but was unable to avoid the collision.
"After he hit us we started skidding and then rolled," Goddard said.
DPS officers obtained a search warrant to draw blood from Arrazola. He was arrested at the scene of the accident and is being held in Maricopa County jail on three counts of both endangerment and manslaughter. Bail has not been set. Valenzuela said aggravated assault charges could be added later.
Arrazola was not injured in the accident.
Goddard, who works for the California-based technology company, Novariant, said he and his family recently moved to Payson from Colorado.
"We wanted a new start in life, but got kind of short changed," he said.
Funeral arrangements are pending, but Goddard said services for his wife, Pernilla and stepson, Simon, would probably be held in their native homeland of Sweden.
The Beeline Highway northbound was closed to all traffic until 2 a.m.