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19-year-old arrested on DUI charge in Briggsmore crash

Modesto police arrested a 19-year-old driver on suspicion of drunk driving and causing injuries after he lost control of his speeding car and crashed on Briggsmore Avenue early today.

The accident occurred just before 2 a.m. just east of Oakdale Road, Lt. Chris Fuzie reported. He said Sophana Sam was driving a 1995 BMW west on Briggsmore at about 80 mph when he lost control, left the road, rolled over and crashed into several boats at Bob’s Marine, causing between $50,000 and $100,000 damage, Fuzie said.

A 17-year-old girl and 19-year-old man in the back seat were ejected, Fuzie said. A 21-year-old man in the front passenger seat suffered moderate injuries. Police are investigating whether the people in the vehicle were wearing safety belts.

The 17-year-old girl from Modesto was in critical condition Friday at a Modesto hospital. Her name wasn’t released because she is a minor. The other back seat passenger, Terry Vann of Modesto, suffered a fractured skull and is hospitalized, Fuzie said. The other passenger was Sovattra Yim of Modesto.

Sam was arrested but remained in the hospital, Fuzie said. It is the second time Sam has been arrested in a drunk driving case, he added. His blood-alcohol content today was 0.18, more than twice the legal limit for driving. Police shut down the westbound lanes until 8:15 a.m. while the accident was investigate.

Fuzie asked anyone with information about the accident to call the Modesto Police traffic unit at 572-9592.

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