On Sunday when I initially wrote about Andy Quach being arrested for allegedly driving under the influence I raised a couple questions…
I have heard that at some point QuachÂ was paid by Assemblyman Tran to do fundraising for him.Â I havenâ€™t been able to find any more details on this in the most recent filings, but Iâ€™m still looking. Could Andy have been on a fundraising expedition for Van last night?Â
Rumors are flying around Little Saigon about the accident and who was with Andy before and possibly during the accident. Among the rumors is one about there being a possible passenger in the car with Andy who left the scene before the cops arrived.
I wonder, does anyone know if Van Tran was in town last night? Did anyone see him with Andy Quach last night?
Looks like I was on to something. Since then I learned that Van Tran and Andy Quach were allegedly at a fundraising dinner at Citris in Westminster earlier that evening. What I was unsure about was what time they left Citris and if they had gone somewhere else.
While Tran does not admit to being with Quach at Citris, he does admit that he met up with him sometime before 10 pm Saturday night at West Coast Seafood Buffet on Beach Blvd, in Westminster. Tran said that he had been at a vigil in Santa Ana before he joined up with Quach and then left around 10 pm. My first question is what vigil was Tran at on Saturday night? If we had that information maybe the time lines would make more sense.
It is still reasonable to suppose that Tran was with Quach at West Coast Buffet until he left at around midnight. The accident happened a little less than a mile down McFadden from that location and it is on the way to Tran’s home. Given his blood alcohol level, it is unlikely that Quach would have been able to drive all the way from Citris to the accident site.
There are a couple of pieces to this puzzle that need to be pulled together before we can rule out Tran being in the car with Quach. One critical piece is the police report. My guess is that it may contain information about who was on the scene when the police arrived? If Van Tran was already at the scene when the police arrived, it would be unlikely that he was there as a result of a call from Quach before they did. The D.A. statement clears that up.
A few minutes past midnight, on Aug. 2, 2009, Westminster police officers responded to a traffic collision at 8821 McFadden Avenue, Westminster. Shortly after police arrived, the engine area of the car burst and ignited in flames.
Seems they got there rather quickly. The other part of the story that doesn’t add up is the part about Tran coming to the scene because he got a call from Quach. Here’s why:
the defendant is accused of showing objective signs of intoxication including blood shot eyes, slow and slurred speech…
I found this little chart from Virginia Tech on the progressive affects of alcohol consumption.
Based upon his tested blood alcohol level of .26%, I find it hard to believe that Quach would have had the ability to think about calling Tran, much less the actual ability to dial a phone. I suppose if Tran were to produce his or Quach’s phone records for that time period showing that the two connected by phoneÂ we could clear up this matter once and for all. I’m guessing the odds of that happeningÂ are pretty slim. I also wonder how or why the officers would have let Quach make any calls while they were investigating the accident.
I do have one more question about this West Coast Buffet place. They are a restaurant andÂ they close at 10 pm. If Quach was there until just before his accident why did these people continue to serve him alcohol when he had to be clearly intoxicated? Better yet, why did they let him leave their establishment and get behind the wheel of his car?
I do have to say that I am impressed that the District Attorney was able to turn around the police report from Westminster so quickly and file charges on Tuesday afternoon. I am also impressed at the speed with which the results of that blood test came through.
If Van Tran’s people were hoping that the charges being filed would shut down any further inquiry into the events of that night, not happening here.