Mother was drunk when Hart family SUV plunged into ocean, police say

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The California Highway Patrol said on Friday that Jennifer Hart, who was driving the SUV that plunged off the cliff in Mendocino County on March 26 carrying her wife and six children, had a blood alcohol level above the legal limit.

A "missing" poster shared by friends and family on face-book identified that the Thottapilly family associates as 42-year-old Sandeep, 38-year-old Soumya, 12-year-old Siddhanty and 9-year-old Saachi.

The body was found yesterday on an exposed terrain which appeared to have covered by the Eel River within the last few days as a result of a recent weather storm which brought heavy rain to the area. Authorities said they also recovered a number of personal items from the river during the search, and have concluded that the SUV that drowned in Eel river in the first week of April most likely belonged to the Thottapilly family. Meanwhile, Sandeep's father Babu Subramaniam Thottapilly took to social media and put out a message to Union Bank stating that his son, who was working as vice-president with the bank, and his family has been missing during their trip to Oregon.

Searchers are looking for the missing family members and their vehicle which is believed to be submerged somewhere in the Eel River.

On Thursday, the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office said it had found belongings of the Thottapilly family, of Santa Clarita, as well as vehicle parts from their SUV about 14 miles down river from where investigators believe they rolled down an embankment.

A body was pulled outside of the surf but was perhaps not identified.

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They made headway over about 12 miles of river bank during two days of searching.

A witness told investigators they saw a maroon SUV, possibly a Honda Pilot, crash into the river north of Leggett around 1:10 p.m. April 6, the CHP said.

"The teams were unsuccessful in locating the vehicle or any occupants from the vehicle". Three of the children were missing, though the body of a girl believed to be one of the missing children was found near the site of the accident last week. These items were of a personal nature and will not be described further at this time, but it does confirm the fact the vehicle that was seen going into the river was that of the Thottapilly family. "Several items have been positively identified, by the family members, as belonging to the Thottapilly family", it said. On their return on April 5, they spoke of plans to stop and visit relatives in San Jose the following day, the San Jose Police Department said in a statement. The family was reported missing that Sunday.

The-Lost motor vehicle dragged to some turnout, was reportedly southbound on Highway 101 and went over the side and also in to the river.

Sandeep Thottapilly grew up in Surat city in Gujarat and settled down in the United States over 15 years ago.

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