Jul 28, 2014
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21-Year-Old Cathedral City Man Killed in Palm Desert Crash, Indio Man Accused of DUI

21-Year-Old Cathedral City Man Killed in Palm Desert Crash, Indio Man Accused of DUI
A 21-year-old Cathedral City man was killed and two people sustained major injuries when a pickup struck a tree Thursday morning in Palm Desert, and an Indio man was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, authorities said.

The crash was reported at 4:26 a.m. Oct. 3 on Washington Street, north of Interstate 10, according to Cal Fire.

A 1992 Ford single cab pickup truck was southbound on Washington Street, north of Wildcat Drive, California Highway Patrol Officer Mike Radford said.

"There were three occupants in the Ford, a 26 year old male from Indio, a 26 year old female from Indio and a 21 year old male from Cathedral City," Radford said in a statement. "For unknown reasons, the Ford traveled to the left, over a concrete curb and struck a tree head on in the center divider."

Firefighters found three patients and used hydraulic tools to get them out of the damaged pickup, according to Cal Fire.

"All patients have been extricated," Jody Hagemann of Cal Fire-Riverside County said in a statement. "One patient succumbed to fatal injuries and two additional patients were transported by ground ambulance to an area hospital for treatment of major injuries."

The deceased was identified by the coroner as a 21-year-old resident of Cathedral City. His name was not released.

The driver of the Ford involved in the fatal crash was identified as Willard Douglas, 26, of Indio, Radford said. Douglas was arrested on suspicion of DUI, but he was not taken into custody due to his injuries.

Douglas and the Indio woman were being treated at Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs. Radford said the investigating officer at the crash scene reported it did not appear any of the people in the pickup were wearing seatbelts.

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