A 59-year-old man from Riverside is dead following a fatal traffic collision with a wrong-way driver suspected of being under the influence of alcohol, authorities announced Sunday.
Officers with the Rialto Police Department responded to reports of the deadly crash in the 300 block of West Santa Ana Avenue on June 24 at around 8:43 p.m., police said.
At the scene, first responders discovered one of the motorists, identified as Gregory Cruz, suffering from life-threatening injuries. Personnel with the Rialto Fire Department rushed the 59-year-old to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead.
The second driver, identified as 48-year-old Jose Saavedra-Escoto from Bloomington, was also taken to the hospital with minor injuries, authorities said.
Detectives with the police department’s Major Accident Investigation Team assumed the case. A preliminary investigation revealed that Saavedra-Escoto had been traveling westbound on Santa Ana Avenue from Willow Avenue in his white Ford F-150 pickup truck when he crossed into eastbound lanes and collided with Cruz, who was driving a white Chevrolet Lumina.
“Saavedra-Escoto was suspected to be driving under the influence of alcohol at the time of the collision,” Rialto police said in a news release.
The 48-year-old was arrested and booked on suspicion of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. His bail was set at $250,000.
Anyone with information about the crash is encouraged to contact Traffic Sergeant Dan Smith at 909-644-6025. Anonymous tips can be made through WeTip at 800-782-7463.