Second Beaumont victim dies after fatal Hemet DUI wreck

UPDATED: Saturday, May 4, 10:30 a.m.

See Original Story below.

HEMET — A second victim has died after a deadly DUI-related crash earlier this week, Wednesday evening, May 1. The fatal, three-vehicle collision happened at the intersection of Warren Rd. and Florida Ave.

The alleged drunk driver, Faalele Rosemarie Patea, 25, of Moreno Valley – who was already on parole for a 2016 felony conviction – was arrested at the scene the night of the crash and now faces numerous additional charges; including two counts of first degree murder, two counts felony DUI-gross vehicular manslaughter, and other related charges. She remains in custody and is being held without bail.

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Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner officials have identified the second victim killed in last Wednesday’s collision as Kyle TowaI, 22, of Beaumont. A coroner’s release indicated Towal passed away about four hours after the crash and was pronounced deceased at Riverside University Health System in Moreno Valley at 1:12 a.m.

Coroner officials had previously identified Joshua Serquina, 22, of Beaumont, as the first man who died as a result of the collision. A coroner’s release indicated he passed away about three hours after the crash, and was pronounced deceased at 12:01 a.m.

Faalele Patea, 25, of Moreno Valley, was arrested the night of the crash and faces numerous additional charges after a second Beaumont man died as a result of the 100+ mph crash. Timothy Franzese/Public Safety Incidents photo

Hemet PD interviewed numerous witnesses to the collision the night of the crash, who described seeing the suspect passing other vehicles on the wrong side of the road into oncoming traffic, weaving in and out of lanes of travel, and driving at an excessively high rate of speed.

“Evidence at the scene and witness statements indicate that Patea was speeding, traveling over 100 miles per hour” when she smashed into the Honda, Hemet PD later explained of the fatal DUI crash.

Patea, who was already arraigned on her original charges, now faces a litany of additional charges, including two counts of first degree murder, two counts of DUI – gross vehicular manslaughter, two counts of felony DUI causing great bodily injury, inflicting great bodily injury, three felony prior prison enhancements, violation of parole, and driving on a suspended license.

Her next court date has been scheduled at an unspecified court, May 21.

Anyone who may have witnessed this collision or Patea’s alleged reckless driving before the crash and has not provided a statement to officers, is encouraged to contact Hemet PD traffic investigators at (951) 765-2400. Callers can refer to incident file number 19-3840 and can remain anonymous.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information is available.


ORIGINAL STORY: MV woman, 25, charged after fatal DUI wreck kills Beaumont man, 22

HEMET — A Moreno Valley parolee was arrested and charged in the DUI-related death of a Beaumont motorist, after smashing into another vehicle at the intersection of Warren Rd. and Florida Ave., Wednesday evening, May 1. Just before the deadly crash the alleged drunk driver was seen passing other vehicles and driving recklessly at more than 100 mph, according to multiple witnesses and officers who later arrested the woman.

After the collision, the alleged suspect, who has since been identified as Faalele Rosemarie Patea, 25, of Moreno Valley, was booked into Cois Byrd Detention Center in Murrieta on suspicion of gross vehicular manslaughter, driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs – resulting in injury or death, driving on a suspended license, a prior prison enhancement, and violation of parole. She remains in custody and is being held without bail.

Riverside County Superior Court records indicate Patea was on parole after a June, 2016 incident where she was charged with assault with a deadly weapon, domestic violence, and three counts of willful cruelty and harm to a child. She pleaded guilty to a single count of domestic violence two months later.

When officials arrived they found two men in their 20’s, who were trapped and unconscious in their wrecked vehicle. One of the two men, Joshua Serquina, 22, of Beaumont, later succumbed to his injuries and passed away. Ricardo Ruelas/Hemet News photo

City of Hemet Police and Fire Departments, along with CHP, Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, and other emergency personnel, were dispatched to the scene of the fatal collision just after 9 p.m., after receiving reports of a three-vehicle, major-injury traffic collision. 911 callers reported two victims from the vehicle Patea plowed into were unconscious, not breathing, and possibly trapped inside their wrecked vehicle.

Officials began arriving at the crash within minutes of the dispatched call and located three involved vehicles, later described as a silver 2013 Volkswagen Jetta with heavy front-end damage, a Honda Civic that was totaled, and a black Mercedes Benz with only minor visible damage. Officials also found a traffic signal pole that had been knocked down and destroyed in the multi-vehicle crash.

Firefighters and paramedics quickly went to work providing life-saving efforts to the two male occupants from the destroyed Honda, while working to extricate them from their heavily damaged car. Paramedics were observed at the scene providing CPR and other life-saving measures to both victims, and the two men were later airlifted to an area trauma center with major injuries.

Despite life-saving efforts, one of those two victims later succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased by medical personnel.

“Unfortunately one of the injured men did not survive, and the other man remains at the hospital listed in critical condition,” Hemet PD later reported in a written press release.

Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner officials later identified Joshua Serquina, 22, of Beaumont, as the man killed in the collision. A coroner’s release indicated he passed away about three hours after the crash, and was pronounced deceased at 12:01 a.m.

Although firefighters and paramedics revived a man found unconscious and not breathing after the crash, the 22-year-old victim later succumbed to his injuries after he was airlifted to an area trauma center. Timothy Franzese/Public Safety Incidents photo

Patea, who was uninjured in the deadly crash, was found up and walking around at the scene and officers detained her for further investigation.

Later, as Patea was performing a series of field sobriety tests at the scene in front of friends and family, as well as an angry and frustrated crowd, she was heard yelling to those who know her, “If I fail this, y’all are going to have to bail me out!”

After she had failed her sobriety tests and was being placed into handcuffs, Patea was heard crying and saying, “Just so you know, when I get out I’m never leaving the house again…I’m never leaving the house again.”

One woman in the nearby crowd yelled back, “I’ve been trying to tell you to stay home Bae,” while another man in the crowd said disgustedly, “You shouldn’t have left the house to begin with,” as he shook his head in anger and walked away.

One witness later told officers and community reporters at the scene that before the crash, Patea had been driving at a high rate of speed and had passing other vehicles – sometimes on the wrong side of the road – as she was speeding east on Florida toward Hemet from the Winchester area. The witness also reported seeing Patea weaving from lane to lane just before she plowed into the rear of the Honda.

Faalele Patea, 25, of Moreno Valley, was arrested and faces numerous charges related to the deadly crash that killed a Beaumont man. Timothy Franzese/Public Safety Incidents photo

Based on the circumstances, members of Hemet PD’s Traffic Team responded to the scene and assumed the investigation.

During their subsequent investigation, officials interviewed several witnesses and learned that before the collision happened, Patea had been traveling eastbound on Florida Ave. approaching a red light at Warren Rd. At the same time the car ahead of her, the Honda Civic occupied by two men in their 20s, was slowing down as the driver approached the red light at Warren Rd.

“Evidence at the scene and witness statements indicate that Patea was speeding, traveling over 100 miles per hour” when she smashed into the Honda, Hemet PD later explained of the fatal DUI crash.

During their investigation, officers called for the temporary closure of both directions of travel on Florida Ave., between California Ave. to Myers St. The roadway was re-opened about six hours later.

Anyone who may have witnessed this collision or Patea’s alleged reckless driving before the crash and has not provided a statement to officers, is encouraged to contact Hemet PD traffic investigators at (951) 765-2400. Callers can refer to incident file number 19-3840 and can remain anonymous.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information is available.

Click any image to open full-size gallery.

Timothy Franzese/Public Safety Incidents video
Ricardo Ruelas/Hemet News video

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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