SANTA CLARA (CBS SF) – A Santa Clara woman was killed early Sunday morning when a suspected car thief ran a red light and slammed into her ride-share vehicle on Lawrence Expressway, authorities said.
Santa Clara police said Claudio Perez, a 32-year-old resident of San Jose, has been booked into jail on murder, driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs while causing an injury, evading a police officer and auto theft charges.
The incident began late Saturday night in nearby Sunnyvale when police located a Honda Accord that had been reported stolen on Aug. 17th. Sunnyvale DPS officers established surveillance on the vehicle and strategically placed a tire deflation device underneath the vehicle’s tire.
At about 1:15 a.m., officers saw a suspect get into the car and begin driving away. Officers attempted a traffic stop, but the suspect sped away in a reckless manner. They decided not to initiate a pursuit and watch the driver flee toward Lawrence Expressway.
Minutes later, a Sunnyvale DPS officer came upon a horrific crash scene. The fleeing suspect had ran a red light and slammed into a ride share vehicle.
Arriving officers discovered and male and a female passenger in the back seat of the ride-share suffering from life-threatening injuries. The 28-year-old female died at a local hospital of her injuries. A 26-year-old male was in serious condition. The ride-share driver also suffered serious injuries.
Investigators are asking that anyone who may have witnessed the crash to please contact Traffic Investigator Nick Cusimano at (408) 615-4764.
*The victim has since been identified as 28-year-old Carol Major, a software engineer with Apple.