3 Hurt, 2 Killed, 1 Murder Charge in DUI-Crash Weekend
As previously blogged, Anaheim Police conducted a DUI checkpoint and saturation patrols Friday evening through the wee hours Saturday, while the Orange County Sheriff's Department also stepped up patrols aimed at getting drunk drivers off the streets of Aliso Viejo, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills and Laguna Woods that very same night.
Perhaps, then, it should be no surprise that DUI-related collisions that injured three people and left two dead happened instead in Garden Grove, Irvine and Costa Mesa.
A commercial truck tractor went off the residential street of Woodbury Road in Garden Grove around 11 a.m. Friday and hit several trees, a fence, concrete planters and a block wall before coming to a stop at 11052 Woodbury Road.
That's not all the rig hit, as 36-year-old Olga Quiroz, who was standing in her yard, was struck and dragged under the truck until it came to a halt at the block wall at the back of the property.
Paramedics treated the woman at the scene before having her taken to a local hospital with lacerations, fractures and other injuries to her legs.
The truck's driver, William Davis, 44, of Orange, was held at the scene by residents until police arrived. Uninjured, Davis was evaluated to have been driving under the influence of alcohol and was later arrested on suspicion of felony DUI.
Several heavy-duty two trucks eventually removed the damaged rig, and the street was closed for about three hours.
The truck and driver were also linked to a non-injury hit and run traffic collision that happened about 45 minutes before at Euclid Avenue and Trask Street. Surveillance video from a nearby home on Woodbury Road is helping investigators piece together the truck's course of travel moments before the collision. Anyone with other helpful information is asked to contact police Investigator Jason Perkins at (714) 741-5823.
An Irvine police officer saw a 2004, 4-door Nissan Altima zooming at speeds in excess of 80 mph through the Alton Parkway and Harvard Avenue intersection, running a red light, around 1:30 a.m. Saturday. The chase was on heading east on Alton, but the officer lost sight of the Altima as it continued eastbound through Culver Drive.
About 30 seconds later, another Irvine cop saw the Altima approach the Alton and East Yale intersection, lose control, strike the curb and then collide with a group of trees at the southeast corner. The driver and lone occupant of the Altima was killed instantly. The 24-year-old Garden Grove resident's name was withheld pending notification of his family.
Around 2:15 a.m. that same morning, a patron of the Red Night Club at 4647 MacArthur Blvd., Newport Beach, reported that his 2004, 4-door Nissan Altima was stolen from the nightclub's parking lot. Newport Beach and Irvine police put two and 4-door together and determined the car wrapped around the trees was the stolen Altima.
Because an Irvine officer had tried initially to pull-over a speeding vehicle that was eventually involved in a traffic collision, the California Highway Patrol is conducting the collision investigation. The Orange County Sherriff-Coroner's Office is conducting toxicology tests on the driver. Anyone with information is asked to contact the CHP's Santa Ana Office or the Irvine Police Department.
Finally, some time before 2:30 a.m. Sunday, a 2008 white Toyota Tundra that had earlier been involved in a non-injury accident in Santa Ana was seen heading south on Flower Street before going through a red light at the intersection with Sunflower Avenue in Costa Mesa and broadsiding a 2008 gold Toyota Carolla that was heading west on Sunflower.
The passenger in the second car, Cara Lee, 20, of Santa Ana, was killed in the collision.
The Corolla's driver, Hao A. Nguyen, 21, of Santa Ana, was taken to Western Medical Center in Santa Ana for treatment of minor abrasions. He was later arrested on suspicion of DUI.
The Tundra driver, Gustavo A. Vega, 22, of Costa Mesa, was treated for minor abrasions at the scene and arrested on suspicion of murder, vehicular manslaughter, felony DUI, felony injury hit-and-run and possession of a controlled substance. He also faces additional charges from the earlier hit-and-run in Santa Ana.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss OC Weekly's biggest stories. Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts