High school graduates rescued from burning car following police chase through Danville: authorities

The sheriff's office says the car's driver ran a red light. When officers tried to pull the car over... a pursuit began.

ByAnser Hassan KGO logo
Sunday, June 4, 2023
Teens rescued from fiery car crash in Danville, officials say
An eleventh-grade high school student remains in critical condition after allegedly running two red lights during a police chase through Danville.

DANVILLE, Calif. (KGO) -- An eleventh-grade high school student remains in critical condition after allegedly running two red lights during a police chase through Danville early Saturday morning.

First responders worked quickly to pull five people out of the burning car, which caught fire after crashing.

"We pulled up to the light and we saw a big fire outside of Starbucks. And we were kind of wondering, 'What's going on?' Parked the car, get out, run over quickly, and we see that they are pulling someone out from the car and braking glass," explains Dan Rogers, who was driving by when he saw the car on fire.

You could feel the warmth of the fire from across the street. It was huge!" says Rogers.

In an email to ABC7 News, the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office says that just after 1 a.m., Danville police tried to pull over a driver for running a red light at Diablo Road and El Cerro Boulevard. The driver didn't stop, so a police chase began.

The chase went almost five miles, as the driver took off eastbound on Diablo Road onto Blackhawk Road. Officials say that's when the driver ran another red light, this time hitting a Tesla. No one in the Tesla was injured.

The speeding car rolled and caught fire, crashing near a Starbucks.

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"A lot of our buddies graduated. So, we are hoping everyone is ok," said Rogers.

The intersection reopened Saturday morning, but the Starbucks was closed due to the damage.

"They were (high school) seniors and... there was one junior," a Danville mother tells ABC7 News, who did not want to be identified. Her daughter knew all the passengers in the speeding car.

The mother says the seniors, all female, just graduated Friday night form Monte Vista High School in Danville. They were treated at the hospital and released.

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The mother says that the junior, the boy who was allegedly driving the car, is still hospitalized and in critical condition. She adds that he, "more than likely, may not (survive)."

She understands that the police have to enforce the rules, but is still concerned about a police chase that went almost five miles through a winding, suburban road.

"For me, I think the cops just have to do what they need to do. But at that time, though, where are the other cars, (were there) other cars around? I don't know. It's not safe. It's a tough call," she says.

Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact the Investigation Division of the sheriff's office at (925) 313-2600, through the dispatch center at (925) 646-2441 or by leaving an anonymous voice message at (845) 846-3592. Information can also be emailed to tips@so.cccounty.us.

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