Wednesday, July 5, 2017

SPEED KILLS: 2 drivers died in a fiery crash in Santa Clarita after the driver of a BMW, 34-year-old Joel Thomas Godfrey, was traveling at high speeds in between traffic when it crossed into opposing lanes in an attempt to pass cars and crashed into a Honda sedan head-on killing its drive, Collin Charles Gore, 18.

Two people are dead after a speeding car lost control and crossed into opposing traffic, leading to a fiery wreck on a Santa Clarita street early Tuesday.

The crash was reported shortly before 12:30 a.m. at the intersection of Decoro Drive and McBean Parkway.

Santa Clarita sheriff's officials said the driver of a BMW was traveling at high speeds in between traffic when it crossed into opposing lanes in an attempt to pass cars and crashed into a Honda sedan head-on.

Passersby pulled out the 34-year-old BMW driver before the vehicle erupted into flames, however, he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the Honda, who police said was an 18-year-old man, was also killed in the crash. Officials previously reported the 18-year-old was ejected and the BMW driver died inside his car, but that information was later updated by police.

A friend identified the teen as Collin Gore, a recent graduate of Hart High School. The identity of the 34-year-old was not immediately known.

"It's really sad. I mean, here's a kid who's just graduated. Here's a kid who's got everything ahead of him and that's not going to happen for him anymore," Saugus resident Richard Killam said.

Friends said Gore had graduated with academic honors, was on the swim team and in ASB, and was headed to San Diego State University in the fall.

Residents in the area said speeding on the wide roadways is all too common.

Hours after the crash, both cars were towed from the scene with the BMW charred beyond recognition and the Honda completely smashed.

"It's hard for the valley. It's hard for the community. Unfortunately, it's going to be extremely tough for two sets of families. This is going to be their Fourth of July for the rest of their lives. This is how they remember the Fourth of July," Sgt. David Shoemaker said.

It was unclear if drugs or alcohol played a factor in the crash. Authorities believe speeding was a key contributor.

Gore's loved ones held a vigil at Hart High School Tuesday night.


Man, Teen ID’d as 2 Killed in Fiery Head-On Collision in Santa Clarita
Posted 5:55 AM, July 4, 2017, by Anthony Kurzweil, Jennifer Gould, Ellina Abovian and Sara Welch, Updated at 10:57PM, July 4, 2017

Two people, a man and a teenager, were killed after the man's BMW careened into oncoming traffic in Santa Clarita early Tuesday morning, authorities said.

Fire crews respond to a crash in Santa Clarita on July 4, 2017. (Credit: News Source LA)

The vehicles collided head-on near the intersection of Decoro Drive and McBean Parkway around 12:10 a.m., Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Lt. Chuck Becerra said.

The 34-year-old driver of a BMW heading northbound on McBean was spotted weaving in and out of traffic at a high rate of speed when the vehicle hit a tree. The driver lost control, crossed over the center median and struck a Honda that was traveling southbound head-on, according to a sheriff's press release.

The driver of the BMW was pulled from the vehicle and pronounced dead at the scene, Deputy Ryan Elsee said.

Collin Gore is seen in a photo from Twitter.

Video showed the BMW caught fire a short time after the driver was taken out.

The 18-year-old driving the Honda was also killed in the crash and declared at the scene, Elsee said.

Los Angeles County coroner's office officials identified the two killed as 18-year-old Collin Charles Gore and 34-year-old Joel Thomas Godfrey.

Gore was in the Honda, while Godfrey was driving the BMW, according to a Santa Clarita Sheriff's Station official.

Gore, who turned 18 last month, had recently graduated from Hart High School, where he was a member of the swim team. A vigil was scheduled to be held at the school for the teen at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Adriana Aguirre, a classmate of Gore's, said she had been hanging out with him just before the fatal crash, and he was the first to leave the gathering.

“It makes me mad. It makes me really mad. He had so much going for him,” she told KTLA. “He’s one of the brightest, funniest kids in our friend group.”

Gore had recently posted a video to social media announcing his decision to attend San Diego State University in the fall.

"Today the Hart swim family lost an incredible alumni member," the team wrote on Twitter. "Collin's positive energy and spirit was cherished by all."

It was unknown if Godfrey was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash, authorities said.

McBean Parkway from Decoro Drive to Cottage Circle Drive was closed for several hours in both directions during the investigation.