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Father of 3 Children Killed in Crash near Firebaugh Arrested

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Last October Ahmed Mohamed was student of the month in his kindergarten class at Bailey Elementary School in Firebaugh. His picture is still on the bulletin board. But his seat will be empty when students return to class Wednesday morning.

Ahmed, his twin brother Gahassan, who was in first grade, and their three-year-old sister Fatima were killed in a head-on collision near Firebaugh on Tuesday afternoon. Their father 34-year-old Aref Mohamed is in jail, charged with causing their deaths.

Joe Miller of California Highway Patrol outlined the charges:"He is booked under three counts of vehicular manslaughter also three counts of child endangerment, Felony DUI as well as being under the influence of a controlled substance."

Family members say Aref Mohamed was driving his children home from a doctor's appointment in Madera.

The Highway Patrol says the vehicle swerved to the shoulder of the road then veered over the center line hitting a compact car head on. Four young adults in the car were hurt. One was seriously injured.

The three Mohamed children in the minivan were all killed. The twin brothers were ejected from the vehicle.

"This prime example of where seat belts could have avoided a tragic incident. All three of the children were not wearing seat bets and as you can see the father was and as a result he lived." Miller said.

The father was hospitalized briefly, and then booked into the county jail.

At Bailey Elementary School Principal Ana Maria Fuentes says everyone is trying to deal with the loss.

Ana Maria Fuentes: " The reaction is really a reaction of shock, of disbelief. We don't know all of the details be we know it's a tragedy for our school. Our staff and our community."

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crimetracker, firebaugh, local, gene haagenson
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