Driver booked on felony charges in Modesto crash that injured 5, including ejected child

12-year-old girl airlifted to a trauma center and four others hospitalized after a high-speed two-car crash in central Modesto.

Four others hospitalized after a high-speed two-car crash Saturday afternoon in residential neighborhood in central Modesto.
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Four others hospitalized after a high-speed two-car crash Saturday afternoon in residential neighborhood in central Modesto.

The man arrested after fleeing the scene of a high-speed crash into another vehicle in central Modesto on Saturday afternoon has been booked on felony charges, police reported Sunday morning.

Emiliano Maldonado, 40, faces charges of DUI causing injury, hit-and-run causing injury, and resisting arrest, Lt. Jason Grogan said.

Shortly before 4 p.m., Maldonado, driving a black pickup truck, ran a stop sign at the intersection of West Roseburg and Del Vale avenues, Grogan said. He crashed into a white sedan occupied by two women and two children.

Maldonado ran from the scene, but witnesses gave a description and he was spotted a couple of blocks away by officers. Maldonado showed signs of intoxication, Grogan said.

A 12-year-old girl was ejected from the sedan during the collision and was airlifted to a trauma center. The two women, the second child and Maldonado were taken by ambulance to local hospitals.

After the initial impact, Officer Adam Foster said, the truck then struck an unoccupied Mercedes parked in the driveway of a home on the 1500 block of Del Vale, pushing it into the house’s porch. No one in the home was injured, but the structure was damaged.

The sedan came to rest in the street just north of West Roseburg. The girl who was ejected from the vehicle suffered head injuries. She first was taken by ambulance to an area hospital and then airlifted by helicopter to a trauma center that specializes in head injuries, Foster said.

The girl’s condition had improved as of Sunday morning, Grogan said he was told. There was no information available on the condition of the two women and the other child in the sedan. Maldonado was booked upon being treated and released from a hospital. He remained in custody Sunday morning, with bail set at $25,000.

Foster said at the scene that speed is believed to be a factor in the crash. The Modesto Police Traffic and Crime Scene units were activated for the case, he said. They were on scene to collect evidence and interview witnesses.

West Roseburg Avenue from about Kearney Avenue to Carver Road was blocked to traffic while authorities were on scene. “At this time we’re still trying to piece together what happened, that’s why we’re bringing in our traffic collision investigation team,” Foster said.

How it was that the 12-year-old girl was ejected from the sedan is part of the investigation, Grogan said.

Foster said anyone who witnessed the crash or has additional information can contact the Modesto Police Department or call Crime Stoppers at 209-521-4636.

Bee staff writer Deke Farrow contributed to this report.

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Marijke Rowland writes about new business, restaurant and retail developments. She has been with The Modesto Bee since 1997 covering a variety of topics including arts and entertainment. Her Business Beat column runs midweek and Sundays. And it’s pronounced Mar-eye-ke.
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