SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — Two people were dead and five hospitalized early Sunday following a horrific vehicle collision on the northbound Highway 101 connector to Interstate 280, authorities said.
The California Highway Patrol said one of the drivers — 21-year-old Esteban Aguilar Jimenez — had been arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence. He also faces gross vehicular manslaughter charges.
Investigators said Jimenez was driving at a high rate of speed when his Dodger Charger tried to overtake a Nissan Rogue and crashed into the vehicle at 4:10 a.m.
“The impact … caused the Nissan to travel out of control across the transition road, where it stuck a guardrail,” CHP officer Ross Lee told the San Jose Mercury News.
San Jose Fire said one person was declared dead at the scene as crews worked to extricate many others from the crumpled remains of the two vehicles.
A second victim died at the hospital. Both were in the Nissan.
The Santa Clara County medical examiner’s office identified the victims as 61-year-old Rosa Garza and 34-year-old Francisco Garza. The Garzas were both from San Jose.
Rosa Garza, who was the rear passenger in the Nissan, was pronounced dead at the scene while Francisco and a third person in the car were taken to Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Francisco was pronounced dead at 5:05 a.m. and the third person in the car had moderate injuries, Lee said.
The other victims were suffering from a variety injuries ranging from moderate and major and being treated at Valley Medical Center.
The crash shutdown the connector for more than three hours before it reopened.