Jonathan Carlyle Merkley Fatally Run Over After Lying in Front of Car to Stop Drunk Friend

A Garden Grove man celebrating his birthday in the San Diego area early Saturday was run over and killed after lying down in front of a car to prevent a female friend who had been drinking from driving off. 

Jonathan Carlyle Merkley had been celebrating his 34th birthday at the Staybridge Suites hotel in the 6600 block of Mira Mesa Boulevard near Sorrento Valley when the incident happened around 12:30 a.m.

Witnesses said Merkley and the woman had been drinking alcohol with other friends before she left the hotel and he laid down in front of her moving BMW, according to San Diego Police Sgt. Tom Sullivan.

The woman kept driving after running Merkley over, according to Sullivan.

Merkley suffered major trauma to his chest and died about 45 minutes later at a nearby hospital.

Police know the identity of the BMW driver, and at least one hotel guest says, "She needs to turn herself in."

“You need to understand there was a mistake that was made, but to do the right thing,” Gloria Williams told San Diego's Fox-TV station. "I think this is crazy, we don’t value each others lives.”

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