A 67-year-old Groveland man died from injuries suffered in a DUI crash late Thursday in Sonora, the California Highway Patrol reported. A 22-year-old Winton man faces felony charges of DUI and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated.
At about 11:50 pm, the suspect, Edgar Albert Santana, was driving west on Highway 108 east of the Old Wards Ferry overcrossing. Going about 40-50 mph in a 2010 Dodge Avenger, he was following a 2016 Toyota Prius Toyota, the CHP report says.
As an eastbound 2002 Ford F-150 was approaching, Santana crossed the solid double yellow lines to pass the Prius. He drove directly into the truck's path and struck it head-on. The Avenger spun back into the westbound lane and struck the Prius.
The driver of the Ford was taken to Adventist Health Sonora, where he was pronounced dead. His name is being withheld pending notification of family.
Santana suffered major injuries and was taken to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto. His passenger, 26-year-old Winton resident Alejandro Mercado, also suffered major injuries and was flown to Memorial Medical Center in Modesto.
Three Empire residents in the Prius — driver Alfredo Jasso-Palma, 26, and passengers, Lucia Reyes, 34, and Carolina Reyes, 70 — suffered minor injuries and were taken to Adventist Health Sonora, the CHP reported.
Santana was placed under arrest about 12:35 a.m. Friday, but remains hospitalized, CHP Officer Faustino Pulido said.
Highway 108 was completely blocked and closed for about three and a half hours.