Coroner: CdM track star killed in wreck took antipsychotic medication
A former Corona del Mar High School track star who died in a high-speed crash that killed two along Mariner’s Mile earlier this year had been taking antipsychotic drugs, according to a toxicology report released Monday.
Olanzapine and quetiapine, drugs prescribed for manic depression and schizophrenia, were found in the body of Julia “Julie” Allen, according to the Orange County coroner’s report.
Allen suffered from bipolar disorder, the report stated, which can cause manic and depressive states, but there was no reference to schizophrenia.
The drugs Allen was taking can cause drowsiness and other side effects, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. It was unclear, however, from an initial reading of the report what type of effects, if any, the drugs may have had on Allen’s ability to drive.
It was also unclear if the drugs were simply found in her system or if she had been taking them in the hours before the crash.
The post-mortem screening did not find alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, opiates or other drugs in Allen’s system.
Allen, who was 27, died of a laceration to the brain with massive skull fracture due to vehicular blunt force trauma, the report said.
She is believed to have been driving at speeds upward of 90 mph down West Coast Highway along Mariner’s Mile in Newport Beach on Jan. 15 in an accident that involved nine other vehicles, according to accounts given to police at the time. The rate of speed has not subsequently been verified but it is widely agreed upon that she was traveling well above the speed limit in her tan-colored Ford Taurus.
Allen broadsided a pickup truck turning left in front of her. Her Taurus went airborne and landed on a motorcycle and other cars facing west at the Riverside Avenue stoplight.
One witness reported seeing Allen’s car airborne before it reached the intersection. In addition to Allen, Christopher De La Cruz, 49, of Laguna Niguel, and his mother, Linda Burnett, 69, of Santa Ana, were killed in the wreck.
Police could not be immediately reached for comment Monday afternoon but in recent interviews said the exact cause of the wreck remains under investigation.
Allen was a distance running star who attended CdM High and earned a full-ride scholarship to Stanford University, where she graduated before moving back to Newport Beach.
—Staff Writer Joseph Serna contributed to this report.