[UPDATE 4:11 p.m.] Benadryl Found in Bodies of Some of the Hart Family Killed in Mendocino Crash; Jen Hart Drunk, Says Law Enforcement
California Highway Patrol Captain Bruce Carpenter stated during a press conference today, “As of yesterday,…we got some preliminary toxicology results back as part of the Coroner’s investigation…Sarah Hart had a significant amount of the ingredient commonly found in Benedryl. As of today, two of the children also were determined to have Benedryl type substances in their system. The third child that has been recovered that has not been determined yet.”
Carpenter said The FBI was working closely with local law enforcement to help determine what had happened. “We believe that the Hart Incident was, in fact, intentional,” he said.
He stated that when Hart was about 70 feet from the edge of the pullout, “[T]here was a braking action and then just acceleration.” He said, “The FBI is deploying their behavioral analysis unit to try to help us understand what happened.”
While Benadryl is commonly used for allergies, some people also use it to help them fall asleep. At this time, Carpenter said that there isn’t enough information to indicate why some members of the Hart family had the drug in their bodies.
UPDATE 4:11 p.m.:
On 04-13-2018 the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Coroner’s Division received preliminary BA/Toxicology analysis results connected to autopsies that were previously performed in connection with this case.
Those preliminary results showed Jennifer Hart had a .102 BAC (blood alcohol content) while Sarah Hart and two of the children had a positive toxicology finding in their blood for Diphenhydramine, an active ingredient in Benadryl.
The Coroner’s Division is still awaiting the BA/Toxicology analysis of the third child that was recovered on 03-26-2018.
At this time the Coroner’s Division is not releasing the names of the children associated with these toxicology findings.
The shoreline searches conducted on 04-12-2018 by patrol deputies were unsuccessful in locating any of the missing children (Hannah Hart, DeVonte Hart and Sierra Hart) or physical evidence associated with this investigation.
Searches of the Mendocino County coastline will continue with on-duty patrol deputies as calls for service allow. Mendocino County Search & Rescue divers are preparing to be deployed to the area of the crash site once ocean conditions improve for safety reasons. It is anticipated that ocean conditions will not improve for several days.
Future press releases will only be disseminated when significant developments occur or when large scale Search & Rescue Operations are scheduled. The daily press release will be discontinued after today.
Ongoing updates/photos will also be posted on the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office facebook page as information becomes available (https://www.facebook.com/
Due to the massive media attention related to this incident the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office has been receiving an overwhelming amount of telephone calls and emails. The massive number of inquires for information is hampering the routine daily operations of the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office.
In an attempt to resolve this situation the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office will be sending out an electronic written press release each day at 9:00 AMhighlighting information from the previous day’s investigative work.
All telephone call and email inquires will be referred directly to the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office press release page on our website.
Anyone wishing to subscribe to the Sheriff’s Office automated press release notification system can do so by visiting www.mendocinosheriff.com and by accessing the press release page on the website.
Earlier Chapters for Hart Family:
- Multiple Fatalities After Car Crashes off Hwy 1
- Five Fatalities in Hwy 1 Accident
- Sheriff’s Office Releases Names of People Who Died in Monday’s Highway 1 Crash
- Rescuers Continue Searching for Children Missing After Highway 1 Crash
- Body Found Near Juan Creek; Possibly Connected to Missing Hart Children