Atwater police: DUI suspect flees crash, leaving behind injured passenger; other driver also hurt

11/18/2013 9:28 PM

11/18/2013 9:29 PM

A suspected drunken driver fled a crash scene Sunday, leaving a woman in his car with a head injury, the Atwater Police Department reported.

The woman, Maria Carballieo, 29, and the driver of the other vehicle were taken to area hospitals with injuries that were not life-threatening, police said in a statement.

The suspected drunken driver, 28-year-old Salvador Garcia-Hernandez, was found a short time later on Atwater Boulevard and detained by police, Lt. Samuel Joseph said. Garcia-Hernandez was released to an area hospital to treat potential internal injuries and was not booked, authorities said.

Police responded just before 1 a.m. to the crash in the 800 block of Juniper Avenue. The driver of a 2004 Honda Accord, later identified by police as Garcia-Hernandez, was traveling west and struck a white pickup truck headed in the opposite direction, police said.

Police said Garcia-Hernandez fled on foot.

The driver of the pickup truck, who was not identified, complained of head and chest pain and was taken to an area hospital, police said.

Police said Garcia-Hernandez’s blood-alcohol level was measured at 0.18 percent, more than twice the legal limit.

Atwater police said they are seeking criminal charges through the Merced County District Attorney’s Office of drunken driving causing injury, among others.

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