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Update: Man sentenced for felony gross vehicular manslaughter 

Update posted April 10, 2024:

Daniel Angel Saliganpatricio, 25

Daniel Angel Saliganpatricio, 25.

– San Luis Obispo County District Attorney Dan Dow announced today that San Luis Obispo City resident Daniel Angel Saliganpatricio (25) has been sentenced to serve five years and four months in state prison.

The incident occurred on Nov. 21, 2022, shortly after 5:30 p.m., when Saliganpatricio accelerated his vehicle to an estimated 61 miles per hour on Sacramento Drive in San Luis Obispo as he approached a nearly 90-degree turn.

The turn was posted as 20 miles per hour and there was no evidence that he hit the brakes prior to the turn. Saliganpatricio lost control and collided with pedestrians Matthew Ernest Chachere (39) and Jennifer Ann Besser (36) who were walking their dog, Buddy.

Matt, Jenn, and Buddy were killed. The investigation revealed that Saliganpatricio had been reading text messages immediately before the deadly collision.

Photo of Jenn and Matt posted at a memorial at the site of the collision.

Photo of Jenn and Matt posted at a memorial at the site of the collision.

In February, Saliganpatricio pleaded guilty to all the charged counts, without any agreement on what his sentence would be. Because there was no agreement on a sentence, the judge had wide discretion in imposing a sentence that could have ranged from a period of probation to a maximum term of seven years and four months in prison.

Superior Court Judge Michael S. Frye imposed the five-year, four-month sentence after carefully balancing the aggravated circumstances of the collision with Saliganpatricio’s lack of criminal history and acceptance of responsibility before a trial.

Several of Matt and Jenn’s family members provided statements to the court describing the couple as kind, thoughtful, and having a strong love for life and one another.  Jenn’s mother provided the following insight into her daughter:

“Jenn was such a bright light, not only in my life, in the lives of everyone she met, everyone she knew. She was funny, intelligent, articulate, beautiful, kind, she was a really good person. When she met Matt, I knew she had found her person. Together, they lived a big, amazing life. They had created a healthy, active lifestyle and were always doing things together. San Luis Obispo offered them so much. It was the perfect area for them so when Matt got a job in the area in Feb 2022, they were excited to begin a new chapter. It wasn’t long before they had found gyms they loved, coffee houses to enjoy, good restaurants, beautiful hiking along the cliffs, dog friendly beaches for Buddy. Jenn was really excited to share everything they had found to do and see in the area when I visited. I had that opportunity in September and Jenn, Matt and I packed so much into those 10 days together. It was one of the best trips. Jenn even wrote to her friends about what a great trip it had been. I received a thank you card from her when I got back home. That was who Jenn was. She appreciated everything and made sure she expressed that.” – Pati Blevins

Matt’s mother provided the following, description of her son:

“Matt was a resilient man with great humility and a kind, loving heart. He was extremely capable and was an uplifting and inspiring role model and leader. He acted with deep moral convictions and had an uplifting strong influence on all he met, worked alongside, and played. Matt was a bright light, but never wanted to outshine others. He cared for his family, friends, team, and coworkers in genuine and significant ways. The loss of his charming smile, huge laugh, boundless sense of humor, and positive attitude will leave a deep and profound void in our hearts and lives.” – Linda Chachere

The case was investigated by the San Luis Obispo Police Department and was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Danielle Baker.

 


Update posted Feb. 22, 2024:

Man pleads guilty to felony gross vehicular manslaughter charges

– San Luis Obispo County District Attorney Dan Dow announced this week that San Luis Obispo City resident Daniel Angel Saliganpatricio, 25, has pleaded guilty to two counts of gross vehicular manslaughter, both are felonies.

The incident occurred on Nov. 21, 2022, shortly after 5:30 p.m., when it is alleged that Saliganpatricio drove his vehicle at a high speed on Sacramento Drive in San Luis Obispo, failed to make a nearly 90 degree turn and collided with pedestrians Matthew Ernest Chachere and Jennifer Ann Besser who were walking their dog, Buddy. Both pedestrians and their dog were killed.

Saliganpatricio entered his guilty pleas to the court on all of the charged counts, without any agreement on what his sentence would be. Because there was no agreement on a sentence, the judge has wide discretion in imposing a sentence which can range from a period of probation to the maximum term of seven years and four months in prison.

Saliganpatricio is scheduled to be sentenced April 9, 2024, in Department 6 of the San Luis Obispo County Superior Court, the Honorable Michael S. Frye presiding.

The case was investigated by the San Luis Obispo Police Department and is being prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Danielle Baker.


 

Update posted March 1, 2023:

Couple, dog killed in San Luis Obispo by speeding driver in November

– On Monday, the San Luis Obispo Police Department issued an update on the double fatal collision that occurred on Nov. 21, 2022. The incident took place at 6:47 p.m. in the 3400 block of Sacramento Drive in San Luis Obispo.

According to the police report, Daniel Saligan Patricio, a 24-year-old resident of San Luis Obispo, was speeding through a curve when he lost control of his vehicle and hit Matthew Chachere and Jennifer Besser, and their pet dog who they were walking at the time. The force of the impact knocked the couple into the adjacent wooded area and down into a dry creek bed where they remained undetected in the darkness and vegetation.

Patricio reportedly either did not know or failed to notify the police that he may have struck two people and a dog. The couple was found under heavy brush near the accident location late the next day after family reported them missing.

After a thorough investigation, the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office filed two felony counts of gross vehicular manslaughter against Patricio and obtained a warrant for his arrest. SLOPD detectives arrested Patricio without incident on Feb. 27, 2023, at his place of employment.

Police Chief Rick Scott expressed his condolences to the family members of the victims and the community as a whole, and added, “SLOPD is committed to the thorough completion of all investigations. We appreciate the patience of the community while we worked towards providing important answers to family members and our community in ultimate pursuit of justice.”

Patricio is currently in San Luis Obispo County Jail, and his bail is set at $200,000.

 


Update posted Nov. 29, 2022:

Victims were walking their dog when they were struck by vehicle

– The San Luis Obispo Police Department has released additional information regarding the two persons and dog found dead in a creek bed last week in San Luis Obispo:

Detectives have been continuing the investigation into this tragic incident. The driver of the vehicle, a 24-year-old male resident of San Luis Obispo, has been cooperative and was interviewed by detectives. Based on the investigation and evidence at the scene, it is believed that the victims were walking their dog when they were struck by the vehicle in the collision. Detectives believe that excessive speed was a factor in this incident. Criminal charges will be determined based on the evidence and findings at the conclusion of the investigation.

If anyone has information relating to the vehicle collision on Monday, Nov. 21, please contact Detective Jeff Koznek at (805) 594-8005 or call Crime Stoppers at (805) 549-7867 to share information anonymously.


Original story posted Nov. 26, 2022:

Police investigating incident, possible connection with traffic accident Monday

– On Monday at approximately 5:35 p.m., the San Luis Obispo Police Department responded to a single-vehicle collision on the 3400 block of Sacramento Drive where a car had reportedly struck the curb, a street sign, and the abutment of the bridge. The driver was not suspected of alcohol impairment; a traffic collision report was completed, and the car was towed.

On Tuesday at 4:40 p.m., SLOPD received a report of a deceased dog in the creek bed in the 3400 block of Sacramento Drive. Officers investigated the scene and attempted to contact the owners of the dog but were unsuccessful and began to make arrangements to have the dog brought to San Luis Obispo County Animal Control.

Several hours later at approximately 9:45 p.m., SLO Police received a missing persons report regarding two San Luis Obispo residents who had not arrived at their expected location in Modesto. Family members provided photos of the residents and their dog. Officers searched the resident’s home and found it empty with no signs of foul play. Upon viewing the photo of the missing dog, a SLO Police dispatcher was able to make the connection between the earlier report of the deceased dog with the dog owned by the missing residents. Officers returned to the heavily wooded creek bed and after a further search of the area discovered the deceased bodies of the missing residents under heavy brush.

The deceased were identified as Matthew Chachere, a 39-year-old resident of San Luis Obispo, and Jennifer Besser, a 36-year-old resident of San Luis Obispo.

San Luis Obispo Police Department Detectives are investigating the scene with assistance from the San Luis Obispo Coroner’s Office, to determine if there is a connection between the traffic accident on Monday and the deceased victims. The cause of death is pending the coroner’s report.

This investigation is ongoing. If anyone has information relating to the vehicle collision on Monday, Nov. 21, contact Detective Jeff Koznek at (805) 594-8005 or call Crime Stoppers at (805) 549-7867 to share information anonymously. Incident numbers: 221121067, 221122063, 221122085.

 

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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at info@pasoroblesdailynews.com.