POMONA (CBSLA.com) — The cause of a deadly accident in Pomona was under investigation Friday.
The crash took place at 10:46 p.m. Thursday on Arrow Highway at Mariposa Street, according to the Pomona Police Department.
A preliminary investigation revealed the collision involved two vehicles, one of which struck a power pole and electrical transformer.
“We heard like a crunch, a bang and our lights flickered,” a neighbor said.
Marissa Leigh Vasquez, 32, was on her way to a nursing job when her vehicle was struck.
“All I see is a lady’s arm just hanging, and it was very terrible what we saw. My brother-in-law came to try and help, but it was helpless,” a witness said.
Vasquez, who has a fiance and nearly one-year-old daughter, was pronounced dead at the scene.
“I feel really bad you know, before Mother’s Day. I just think about how it could have been any of our family members,” the witness said.
The driver of the second vehicle, 37-year-old Michael Daniel Gardner, of Pomona, reportedly fled the scene on foot. With the help of witnesses, he was later apprehended.
According to officers, Gardner was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident.
Earlier in the evening, police were pursuing him as he was driving an unreported stolen 2014 Mercedes Benz at a high rate of speed.
Due to the wet weather, they decided not to follow. The crash took place a short time later.
Gardner was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries sustained in the accident and later arrested for vehicular manslaughter and grand theft auto.
The intersection was closed for several hours while crews cleared the scene.
Anyone with information regarding the incident was asked to contact the Pomona Police Department’s Traffic Division at (909)620-2081.