Santa Maria man charged with murder in DUI crash appears in court

Cameron Oliver.
Cameron Oliver.

A man charged with driving drunk in an Orcutt crash that killed two of his passengers made a brief appearance in Santa Barbara County Superior Court on Monday morning, but he did not enter a plea.

Cameron W. Oliver, 25, of Santa Maria, was charged with murder last week in connection with a single-vehicle rollover crash on Highway 135 that killed one woman instantly and critically injured another woman who died days later.

Oliver has been charged with two counts of murder and felony driving with blood alcohol content exceeding .08 percent causing bodily injury to a third passenger, the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office said. Oliver also faces several special allegations that he had a blood alcohol content above .15 percent, drove at least 30 mph above the speed limit, and was convicted of a prior DUI offense.

According to the criminal complaint, Oliver allegedly had a blood-alcohol content that exceeded .19 percent and was driving more than 125 mph at the time of the crash.

The women who died because of the Feb. 6 crash were Leann Stauffer and Tricia Jensen, both 37 and from Santa Maria.

Stauffer was in a relationship with Oliver, according to Stauffer’s Facebook page. Jensen was originally from Nipomo and had attended Arroyo Grande High School.

A fourth person in the vehicle, Brian Freeborn, 38, of Santa Maria, suffered minor injuries in the crash.

Family members of the victims and defendant were in the Santa Maria courtroom Monday morning.

At the request of attorneys, Judge James Iwakso continued the hearing in further arraignment status to March 6.

Oliver also faced a probation violation stemming from domestic violence incident in 2015. Terms of the probation banned Oliver from drinking alcohol for three years, which didn’t end until 2019.

Oliver remains in Santa Barbara County Jail with no bail set, due to his prior DUI from San Diego County, Deputy District Attorney Stephanie Savrnoch said.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at jscully@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.