UPDATE: Bart Graves with the Department of Public Safety tells News 11 33 year-old Jorge Espinoza of Yuma is now facing one count of manslaughter, fourteen counts of endangerment, and seven counts of criminal damage. He has been booked into the Yuma County Jail. The charges are in connection with the May 6 death of DPS Officer Tim Huffman. The arrest was made at 5:30 p.m. Friday evening in Yuma.
On May 6, 2013, at around 5:10 p.m., three Arizona Department of Public Safety officers including Huffman were investigating an injury collision on the eastbound lanes of Interstate 8, about 40 miles east of Yuma. Officer Tim Huffman’s patrol vehicle was parked on the shoulder. Huffman was in his car writing a report on the accident, when an empty tanker truck was traveling eastbound on Interstate 8 heading towards the closure. Despite the flashing lights and attempts by an officer to signal the truck driver, the tanker truck collided with the DPS Officer’s patrol vehicle in the number-two lane, and then struck Huffman’s vehicle which was parked in the emergency lane. The Officer whose car was in the number-two lane was able to jump out of the way moments before the crash. The force of the impact killed Huffman, who was still inside his vehicle.
At the time of the crash, Espinoza was traveling from Yuma to Phoenix. He was not injured in the crash.
Huffman, who served as a member of the Arizona National Guard for many years in addition to his DPS service, was 47. He is survived by three siblings who live out of state. He joined DPS 14 years and was based out of Yuma.
With his death, Huffman became the 29th DPS officer to lose his life in the line of duty.