CLOVERDALE (CBS SF) — Investigators looking into a crash that killed a teenage girl in Cloverdale are trying to find out why no one told first responders to the crash that she was missing.
California Highway Patrol officers discovered the body of a 16-year-old Angelica Contreras on Saturday morning, following an investigation of a collision of two cars that had been racing in the same area the previous night.
The 16-year-old’s body was found in a creek bed, approximately 150 feet from the scene of a collision, which officers had responded to around 10:20 p.m. on Friday, according to CHP officials.
Officers determined the body belonged to a 16-year-old girl, although the girl’s family had not reported her missing, the CHP said.
At no time did any of the involved parties or any of several spectators inform emergency responders that the 16-year-old victim was present and had gone missing, according to the CHP.
The preliminary investigation indicated a 1998 Volkswagen Bug and a 2008 BMW 535i sedan were racing along East First Street, east of the Russian River, over a bridge that crosses the river, according to the CHP. Both the BMW and the Volkswagen were traveling west at a speed greater than 50 miles per hour, according to CHP officials.
“If we had known that somebody was unaccounted for, missing, that was there prior to the crash, we would have pulled out all the stops looking for them,” CHP Officer Jon Sloat told KPIX 5.
Silence from her friends about what happened is outrageous to Angelica’s family.
“Her friends not having the courage to come back and say, ‘You know, we couldn’t find your daughter,’” said Melissa Contreras, the victim’s sister. “Maybe we could have helped her.”
The driver of the Volkswagen, a 16-year-old boy from Cloverdale, lost control of the vehicle and struck a raised concrete abutment, the CHP said.
Three females had been sitting on the concrete abutment prior to the collision. The teen victim was struck by the Volkswagen and propelled off the bridge, towards the riverbank, according to the CHP.
The driver of the BMW, a 17-year-old boy from Cloverdale, veered off into a dirt turnout after making contact with the Volkswagen, CHP officials said.
Officers determined alcohol was not a factor in the collision.
Parents of the involved parties arrived and assumed responsibility for their children and vehicles, CHP officials said.
The CHP is conducting an investigation along with the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department and Office of the District Attorney.
The investigation will include an inquiry into why the victim’s presence and the fact that she was missing following the collision was not brought to the attention of emergency responders by the involved parties, CHP officials said.
Both vehicles involved in the collision have been impounded as evidence, according to the CHP.
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