Winchester man dead after apparent DUI hit and run

FALLBROOK — A Winchester man died and another man was arrested for suspected DUI after a solo-vehicle hit and run accident near Fallbrook early Saturday morning, Nov. 17.

The accident happened on northbound I-15 when the alleged drunk driver lost control of his vehicle and left the roadway near SR-76, where he struck a call box along the side of the freeway. Despite his seriously injured passengers, the driver continued traveling north on the freeway.

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California Highway Patrol officers were first alerted that a possible crash with serious injuries may have occurred shortly after 5 a.m., when a truck driver called 911 to report seeing a damaged vehicle briefly pull into the I-15 Rainbow truck scales before continuing on northbound I-15, CHP Officer Mark Latulippe later said.

The 911 caller told emergency dispatchers that the damaged vehicle appeared to have just been involved in an accident and that there appeared to be seriously injured passengers inside the vehicle.

Officers notified area hospitals to be on the lookout for anyone brought in with injuries potentially related to a vehicle crash. A CHP incident log indicated officers were eventually notified that several apparent victims had turned up at Murrieta’s Rancho Springs Medical Center.

One passenger involved in the crash and brought to the hospital, identified by officers as a 20-year-old man from Winchester, was pronounced dead at the hospital, according to Latulippe. The victim has not yet been publicly identified, pending further investigation and notification of the victim’s family.

Another passenger, a 21-year-old man from Torrance, sustained moderate injuries and the driver, a 23-year-old man also from Torrance, was reportedly uninjured.

During their subsequent investigation, CHP determined the driver was possibly under the influence and arrested the man, according to Latulippe. No information about the arrested driver was immediately available.

Officers investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident later found a destroyed call box, which the alleged drunk driver apparently struck after losing control of his vehicle.

Officers are asking that anyone who may have witnessed the crash contact CHP’s Border Communications Center at (858) 637-3800. Callers can remain anonymous.

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.

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