BEAUMONT (CBSLA) — A body shop worker and his dog were killed when an out-of-control SUV careened off a freeway in Beaumont and slammed into his business.
The SUV — driven by an unidentified woman — also slammed into a motor home and other cars.
CBS2/KCAL9’s Nicole Comstock reported from the scene.
Police told her the driver of a silver Suburu SUV lost control of his vehicle going westbound on the 10 Freeway in Beaumont.
After the car careened off the freeway, the driver crossed an intersection at 5th Street and Beaumont Avenue at a high rate of speed, jumped a curb and then slammed into an auto body shop killing an employee who was outside working on cars.
The crash happened just before 10:30 a.m. Friday.
Friends of the victim came by Friday evening to pay their respects. They identified him as Darren Kritzberger, a mechanic in his 50s.
He was declared dead at the scene. Friends came to the location with flowers and candles.
The driver of the SUV only had minor injuries.
Comstock spoke to an associate of the business’ owner.
Someone from a nearby store tried to give Kritzberger CPR almost immediately but it was too late.
Comstock also spoke to a man named Joe Castillo who said he was a friend and former roommate of the victim’s.
“He was a good man,” Castillo said, “it’s a shame some lady driving 90 miles per hour ran him over.”
He said firefighters told him the woman was going 90 miles per hour.
Kritzberger was a husband and father. A day-long vigil was planned for him at the location Saturday, Comstock reported.
Comstock was waiting to hear back if alcohol or drugs were a factor in the crash or if speed was solely to blame.