Coroner identifies driver who plunged into San Joaquin River

The Merced County Coroner's Office has identified a man whose car plunged into the San Joaquin River as 21-year-old Garrett Torres of Patterson.

Torres' car, a silver BMW 2003 5 Series, skidded off the road about 1:20 a.m. Sunday, according to California Highway Patrol spokesman John Patterson.

Garrett's body was recovered by Merced County Sheriff's divers Monday afternoon. No other vehicles were involved.

CHP investigators say the BMW was traveling west on Kelly Road. The car moved onto the north shoulder, and the driver turned left and spun out of control. The car traveled across the roadway onto the south shoulder. The car's right side struck the bridge rail sailed through the air and into the river.

-- Sun-Star staff