People v Sonny Joseph Anderson

On August 29, 2016, defendant Sonny Joseph Anderson was convicted of the horrific murder of 14-year-old Ivan Cruz, as well as gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, gross vehicular manslaughter, evading an officer causing death, evading an officer driving against traffic, fleeing the scene of a crash, and assault on a police animal.

The convictions stem from conduct beginning on November 11, 2014, where Defendant Anderson fled from an Alameda County Sheriff deputy who attempted to pull him over for a traffic violation.

On November 11, 2014, Defendant Anderson and a passenger had been smoking methamphetamine and marijuana. While high, Defendant Anderson sped through unincorporated Hayward and San Leandro in his maroon Saturn.

An Alameda County Sheriff's deputy attempted to pull him over for traffic violations, but he evaded the deputy, ignored numerous stop signals, and narrowly avoided collisions with other vehicles. At times, Defendant Anderson drove the vehicle in excess of 60 miles per hour. Eventually, Defendant Anderson led deputies onto East 14th Street.

At the intersection of East 14th Street and Ashland, victim Ivan Cruz was crossing the road with some friends in the crosswalk. Defendant Anderson entered the intersection at approximately 50 miles per hour, against the red light, and from the wrong side of the road. Defendant Anderson struck the 14-year-old victim with his vehicle as the child was crossing the street. Victim Cruz suffered extensive critical injuries and was transported to Eden Hospital. Tragically, Ivan Cruz was pronounced dead upon arrival at Eden.

Defendant Anderson fled the scene and ditched the car on an freeway off-ramp in Fremont. He secreted himself in the garage of his friend’s parents in Newark. The following evening, he was located but refused to leave the garage and surrender to law enforcement. When a police k9 was sent into the garage to apprehend him, Defendant Anderson kicked and hit the dog. He was successfully apprehended after a struggle with law enforcement officers.

Defendant Sonny Joseph Anderson is scheduled to be sentenced for these horrific crimes on September 26, 2016.

The case was prosecuted by DDA Jason Sjoberg with assistance from DA Inspector Frank Bonifacio and Victim-Witness Advocate Nadia Bueno.

(Docket #H57458)

Posted on Aug 31, 2016