Suspected DUI Driver Arrested After Fatal Torrey Pines Crash

According to a recent story appearing on the Fox 5 website, a Moreno Valley man was arrested on Sunday on two counts of murder, two counts of gross vehicular manslaughter, and one count of felony DUI for his role in a crash that happened last month.

Local authorities say that 19-year-old Christopher Schmittel is believed to have been involved in a high-speed crash on the sands of Torrey Pines State Beach on Monday, April 25th.

Investigators of the crash say that Schmittel was driving his Subaru WRX southbound with four passengers on board on Torrey Pines Road at a high rate of speed. Schmittel lost control and hit a guardrail. The vehicle tumbled down a hill and landed on the beach. 

The two passengers, an 18-year-old man, and a 19-year-old man were killed in the crash. Schmittel and two other passengers were taken to the hospital with serious injuries.

Lt. Adam Sharki with the San Diego Police Department told reporters that the accident was tragic and entirely preventable.

 “Anyone who has seen the video footage can see the damage to that vehicle is absolutely catastrophic,” Lt. Sharki said. “People can kind of infer how fast that vehicle was going to leave the roadway to land as far as it did from the roadway, and with the kind of damage it had to it.”

The accident remains under investigation, and Schmittel is currently in custody.

Anyone with any further information is encouraged to call the San Diego Police Department detectives at (619) 531-2000.

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