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Ceres Woman Faces Charges in Fatal Oakdale Crash

Carlos Rodriguez

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OAKDALE – A Ceres woman is facing charges in a fatal crash that claimed the life of her passenger Tuesday morning.

The crash happened at about 5:18am on Highway 108 just east of Lancaster Road. Emergency crews responded and found four vehicles involved in the crash, and an unresponsive adult male down in the roadway.

The California Highway Patrol reports that the driver of a 2003 Chevrolet SUV identified as Erica Linja was traveling eastbound on Highway 108 when she attempted to pass a 2009 Freightliner. The SUV sideswiped a 2001 Honda sedan that was traveling westbound, causing Linja to lose control of her vehicle.

The Chevrolet entered the eastbound lane before swerving back into the westbound lane again directly into the path of an oncoming 2014 Ford utility truck. Both vehicles crashed, ejecting the front passenger who was not wearing a seat belt. The Chevrolet then entered the eastbound lane again where it was struck by the Freightliner.

Linja was transported by air ambulance to a hospital with major injuries. She faces charges of driving under the influence and vehicular manslaughter, both felonies.

The driver of the Ford was also taken to a hospital, but suffered only minor injuries. The driver of the Freightliner and Honda were uninjured in the crash.

The California Highway Patrol would like to remind motorists that properly wearing a seatbelt can save lives during a traffic collision.

Carlos Rodriguez is an Emmy Award winning photojournalist specializing in public safety and natural disasters. His passion for local news stems from a deep commitment to his community, with a selfless mission to inform the citizens of the valley. As he worked on assignment for 19 days at the devastating Camp Fire in Paradise, California, he spent most of his time helping survivors contact their loved ones to let them know they were ok. Carlos is a veteran of Univision, FOX, and Telemundo TV stations and a native of Modesto, California.

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Police Investigate Major Crash in Modesto

Carlos Rodriguez

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MODESTO – Officers with the Modesto Police Department investigated a major traffic collision involving several vehicles Friday night.

The crash happened near the intersection of Carver Road and Standiford Avenue at about 9:15pm. A red Jeep Wrangler and a dark colored Infiniti sports car were involved in the collision.

Police believe the Infiniti and another silver car were racing westbound on Standiford when the Jeep was pulling out of a nearby gas station. The Infiniti and the Jeep collided, ejecting the driver of the Jeep to a parking lot across the street. She was transported to a hospital where she died from her injuries. The Infiniti was heavily damaged, the silver car continued on.

Investigators closed off Standiford Avenue from Carver Road west to Shawnee Drive. A large crowd of witnesses gathered in a nearby parking lot to observe the scene.

Police believe alcohol was involved on behalf of the driver of the Infiniti. Officials anticipate forthcoming charges for him associated with the crash. He was transported to a hospital for treatment.

Anyone with information regarding this crash is encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers at (209) 521-4636 where callers can remain anonymous.

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Pedestrian Critically Injured in Stockton Crash

Gaby Muro

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STOCKTON – Police investigated a hit and run crash that left a pedestrian critically injured early Friday morning.

Shortly after 1:00am police officers responded to the area of Aurora and Anderson Streets for a report of two pedestrians struck by a vehicle. The victims were identified as two men ages 44 and 32.

Authorities say the two men were walking in the street when they were struck by a vehicle. The car fled the area before emergency personnel arrived.

Both men were transported to a hospital where one was said to have critical injuries. The other is expected to survive.

Police have no description of the driver involved in the crash.

Anyone with information regarding this hit and run is encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers at (209) 946-0600 where callers can remain anonymous.

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Driver Suspected of Hit and Run in Ceres Arrested

Carlos Rodriguez

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CERES – Authorities announced the arrest of a man in connection to a fatal hit and run involving a pedestrian from late September.

Ceres Police investigators were lead to a home on the 2400 block of Glendale Avenue in Modesto where they arrested 41 year old Roy Joseph Vasquez Jr. of Ceres.

Police identified Vasquez as the driver of a van that fled the area of Mitchell Road and Whitmore Avenue on September 29th after striking 56 year old Isaac Ishak. Ishak was rushed to the hospital where he later died.

Vasquez was booked into the Public Safety Center on charges including hit and run resulting in major injury or death, forging/altering a vehicle registration, driving on a suspended license for DUI, and failing to have financial responsibility.

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