Highland Teen Dies After Being Struck by Jeep While Crossing Street Near Coachella

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An 18-year-old woman was hit and killed by a Jeep near Coachella on April 15, 2016. (Credit: KMIR)

An 18-year-old woman was fatally struck by an SUV as she crossed the street heading to the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival Friday night, according to police and a report.

The deadly collision occurred just before 8:15 p.m. on Ave 52 east of Monroe Street in Indio, a news release from the Indio Police Department stated. The location is near the Empire Polo Club, where the annual event is held.

Michala Freeland was trying to cross the road when she was hit by a 1990s model Jeep Grand Cherokee, according to the Riverside County coroner’s office and police. She was pronounced dead more than an hour later.

Freeland was going for the first time to the popular music festival, where the Highland resident had applied to work as a security guard, her mother told local television station KMIR.

She was preparing to join the military, her aunt told the Palm Springs-area station. Freeland would have turned 19 next month.

The male driver of the Jeep remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators, police said. He was not cited at the scene.

The man and his infant passenger were not injured in the crash.

The cause of the collision remained under investigation. Anyone with any information is urged to contact the Indio Police Department at 760-391-4057 or Coachella Valley Crime Stoppers 760-341-7867.

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