The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that there are over 10,000 deaths due to drunk driving in the state of California. Approximately one-third of all fatalities that happen on our country’s roadways can be attributed to someone driving under the influences of drugs or alcohol.
KABC Channel 7 in Los Angeles reports that on Sunday, May 10th, a woman was struck and killed by a DUI driver along the 91 Freeway in Corona.
According to a statement issued by the California Highway Patrol (CHP) the fatal accident happened in the eastbound lanes of the freeway near Green River Road when she had gotten out of her car to check on her dogs that were traveling with her in the backseat of her vehicle.
Investigators say that Desiree Taitano, 33, and a friend were traveling in two separate vehicles, the vehicle that she was following had possession of her animals when something upset the ones that were in the vehicle that Taitano was following. Both cars pulled off to the shoulder to check on the dogs and attempt to calm them when she was suddenly struck by a pickup truck. Eyewitnesses say that the driver of the pickup truck fled the scene.
Emergency crews rushed Taitano to the hospital. She later died from the injuries she received in the crash.
CHP officers found the abandoned pickup truck approximately 500 feet from where the fatal crash occurred. Officers at the scene apprehended Jose Hidalgo, 48, of Corona and charged him with suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and felony hit-and-run.
The CHP is asking anyone with any further information about the crash to call (951) 637-8000.