New details have emerged at a coroner's inquest into the tragic deaths of the Hart family whose SUV plunged off of a Northern California cliff last March. On Thursday, a Mendocino County jury ruled that the deaths of Jennifer and Sarah Hart and their six adopted children was the result of a murder-suicide.
According to a CNN report, while the family vehicle was in motion, Sarah searched for information regarding drugs and how fast the family would all die from a crash into the water. Three of the questions found in her search history include:
"How easily can I overdose on over the counter medications?"
"Can 500mg of Benadryl kill a 125lb woman?"
"How long does it take to die from hypothermia while drowning in a car?"
Sarah also reportedly looked for a no-kill dog shelter in the last search.
Devonte Hart, 15, is the sole member of the family unaccounted for from the crash, but Mendocino Sheriff-Coroner Tom Allman told People that Devonte had been legally declared dead. This announcement was after a superior court judge determined Devonte was in the SUV at the time of the crash.
Devonte drew attention in 2014 after a photo went viral of the African American child hugging a white police officer during a protest in Portland, Oregon. The protest was in response to a grand jury's decision not to indict an officer who shot a Black man in Ferguson, Missouri.
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Devonte stood crying while holding a "Free Hugs" sign when the officer asked for a hug.
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12-year-old Devonte Hart, who was previously holding a sign stating “Free Hugs” is seen embracing Portland, Oregon police Sgt. Bret Barnum on Nov. 25, 2014. (Credit: Johnny Nguyen/. . . ✅DM us your pic for a feature. ✅Follow us here @backthebluedoc ✅Follow us on FB: Facebook.com/BackTheBlueDocumentary. ✅Support us: Gofundme.com/back-the-blue-documentary ✅Tag your friends below💙🙏🏼👮🏻. . #police #cop #cops #policeman #policewoman #policeofficer #policelife # #thinblueline #thinbluelinefamily #thankacop #humanizingthebadge #salutetheblue #hero #sheepdog #sheriff #officer #lawenforcement #family #protectandserve #bleedblue #policefamily #bluelivesmatter #restinpeace #endofwatch #eow #rip #neverforget
The multiracial family was well-known as the Hart Tribe. Jennifer and Sarah and their adopted children appeared to be the picture-perfect family as they took regular road trips, went camping, hiking and attended festivals. Although allegations of abuse were present. Records obtained by People reveal that Sarah pleaded guilty to domestic assault after hitting her daughter Abigail, who was 6 at the time.
Forensic pathologist Dr. Greg Pizarro testified on Wednesday that Jennifer and Sarah and three of their children died from broken necks after their SUV fell off the cliff.
Pizarro also revealed that at the time of the crash, Jennifer, who was driving the SUV, had a blood alcohol level of .102 — much higher than California's limit of 0.08, according to CBS San Francisco.
Meanwhile, Sarah reportedly had a near toxic level of an antihistamine in her blood, although Pizarro said that it wasn't the cause of her death.
“Her levels of Benadryl were really high,” Pizarro told the jury.
Mendocino County Deputy Sheriff Robert Julian revealed that both Sarah and Jennifer's bodies were found inside the car, but as the SUV was being lifted, Jennifer's body tumbled out of the vehicle to the rocks below.
The bodies of three of their adopted children, Abigail, 14, Jeremiah, 14, and Markis, 19, were found near the vehicle shortly after the crash. Weeks later, the body of Sierra, 12, was found. In January, a foot that belonged to Hannah, 16, was discovered.
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