Sacto 9-1-1
January 17, 2013
Citrus Heights boy hit by suspected impaired driver dies 3 months later

Henry Perez-Rocha.JPGThree months after he was hit by a driver allegedly under the influence of drugs, little Henry Perez-Rocha (pictured) has died.

The Sacramento County Coroner's website notes that the six-year-old died at 1:45 a.m. Wednesday.

Henry and his brother, Juan Perez-Rocha, 8, were struck in a crosswalk Oct. 5 at Greenback Lane and Mariposa Avenue on their way to Skycrest Elementary in Citrus Heights.

Police said that a Chrysler 300 driven by Tresa Bales-Sterba, 52, of Orangevale collided with a Chevy Suburban in the intersection, then spun into the children. The boys' mother was walking behind her sons with another child and witnessed the accident.

The incident occurred just after 8 a.m. at what is described as a busy and dangerous intersection, where the speed limit is 40 mph but where drivers often speed more than 50 mph.

Hours after the collision, Citrus Heights police arrested Bales-Sterba on suspicion of felony driving under the influence with injury and misdemeanor driving with a suspended or revoked license.

She was released from the Sacramento County Jail after posting $100,000 bail. But during a later court appearance, the judge raised the bail to $200,000 after a toxicology report showed Bales Sterba was under the influence of methamphetamine and other drugs at the time of the crash.

The District Attorney's office filed a motion to increase bail based on the toxicology report and other factors.

Bales-Sterba was taken back into custody, but was released after posting the additional bail.

A check of jail records today does not indicate Bales-Sterba has been re-arrested on more serious charges.

Shelly Orio, spokeswoman for the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office, said staff
members will re-evaluate charges against Bales-Sterba once they have all the necessary information and reports.

Juan Perez-Rocha was sent home to recover not long after the collision that would eventually claim his brother's life. In mid-October, Henry was listed in critical condition at UC Davis Medical Center. His aunt told The Bee at the time that he was in a coma.

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