A 29-year-old woman is accused of hitting a pedestrian with her car while drunk and then driving almost a mile with his body lodged in her windshield, police in Oceanside, California, say.
The crash happened at about 6:20 a.m. Monday, Oceanside Police said. The victim, who was homeless, was pronounced dead at the scene. His name has not yet been released to the public, according to police.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Victim’s Leg Was Severed From His Body & Flew Through the Rear Windshield of the Car as Sanchez Drove, Police Say
The crash left a gruesome scene, with a large hole in the windshield where the man’s body had entered the car. The victim’s body went headfirst through the front windshield, coming to a rest on the front passenger seat, according to police.
Police said the victim’s leg was severed from his body and flew through the car and out of the rear windshield, landing on the trunkm KSBW-TV reports.
The victim was “impaled into the vehicle,” Oceanside Police Sergeant Jeff Brandt told the Washington Post.
Witnesses told police the man was walking along the sidewalk when he was struck by the car.
“There’s no words to really describe it. I mean, just seeing that up close and personal, it’s kind of traumatizing in a way,” witness Edwin Esparza told KNSD-TV.
Another witness, Lou Torres, told the news station, “Horrific. Yeah I’ve never in my whole life have I heard a story like this. It was so strange that I couldn’t imagine any scenario that would cause this.”
2. Sanchez Got Out of the Car & Walked Away After the Crash, Witnesses Say
When she got home, her husband called police.
She was questioned and then arrested at her home when police arrived. Her home is a few blocks away from where she left her car, according to police.
3. She Told Police She Was Drinking All Night at Several Bars & Was on Her Way Home
Sanchez admitted to driving drunk, police told the Washington Post.
She told police she had been drinking overnight at several bars and was on her way home at the time of the crash, KGTV reports.
Police have not said what her blood-alcohol content was at the time of the crash.
4. She Is Facing Several Charges, Including Felony DUI & Vehicular Manslaughter
Sanchez was charged with felony DUI, hit and run and vehicular manslaughter, the Oceanside Police said.
She is being held at the Vista Detention Facility, KNSD-TV reports. It is not clear if she has hired an attorney. She could not be reached for comment.
The crash remains under investigation by the Oceanside Police Department’s Major Accident Investigation Team. Anyone who witnessed the crash or who has information is asked to call 760-435-4911.
5. Community Members Have Set Up a Memorial for the Victim, Saying They Don’t Want Him to be Forgotten
Community members have set up a memorial for the victim, who has not been identified, saying they do not want him to be forgotten, KNSD-TV reports.
“What if it was my family?” Junior Grimmet said.
Police believe the victim was walking to or from Brother Benno, a soup kitchen not far from the scene of the crash, KGTV reports.