Jennifer Hart Was Drunk When She Drove Family, Including Adopted Children, Off a California Cliff: Report

This March 28, 2018, aerial image from Alameda County Sheriff’s Office drone video, courtesy of Mendocino County, shows the pullout where the SUV of Jennifer and Sarah Hart was recovered off Pacific Coast Highway 1 near Westport, Calif.
Photo: Alameda County Sheriff’s Office (AP Images)

California Patrol Capt. Bruce Carpenter confirmed Friday that the woman who drove her family off a cliff in California last month was drunk.

Toxicology tests revealed that Jennifer Hart, who was driving the family SUV when it careered off a cliff in Northern California, had a blood alcohol level of .102, the Associated Press reports. In California, drivers are considered drunk with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or higher.


The tests also revealed that Jennifer Hart’s wife, Sarah Hart, and two of their adopted children had in their bodies “a significant amount” of an ingredient typically found in the allergy drug Benadryl, which can result in sleepiness.

The wives and three of their adopted children were found dead at the bottom of the cliff after the family SUV plummeted into the Pacific Ocean on March 26. Two of the children are missing, feared dead, while the body of a possible third child was uncovered near the crash site but has not been identified.


As the investigation into the horrific crash has unfolded, so have tales of horrific abuse that the Hart children, all of whom were black, received at the hands of their adoptive mothers ... with details of alleged abuse going back almost a decade and continuing up to as recently as a week before the crash.

The children were seen by neighbors begging for food, with Devonte Hart, one of the boys, telling neighbors that his parents weren’t feeding them as a punishment.


One girl was reported to have jumped out of a second-story window and run to a neighbor’s house, apparently seeking help.

“That kid was totally losing her mind, just rattled to the bone,” Bruce DeKalb told the Washington Post. “You can’t fake that.”


However, the situation was dismissed after the Hart family came looking for the girl, identified as Hannah Hart. Hannah later apologized to the DeKalbs for the incident.

Child-protective services had visited the family’s home in Woodland, Wash., at least three times before the crash, but by then it was apparently too late.

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Breanna Edwards

News Editor at The Root, animation nerd, soca junkie, yogi