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Possible evidence of alcohol found in Pasadena crash, police say

Authorities started to examine whether alcohol and speed were factors in the crash that killed three people and injured three others Saturday morning, an official said. 

Preliminary reports indicated that the car driven by 22-year-old Mohed Samuel was traveling nearly three times the posted speed limit of 35 mph when it lost control and crashed into an apartment building on Foothill Boulevard, according to Lt. Antony Russo with the Pasadena Police Department. 

“There was evidence that alcohol was in the car. However, we were unable to determine at this time if the driver was impaired or under the influence,” Russo said. 

Surveillance footage captured a White Tesla barreling down Foothill Boulevard after running a red light before plowing into a building near Vista Avenue around 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

In addition to the 22-year-old driver, another 22-year-old who was in the passenger seat died in the violent crash. 

Among the four people in the backseat, one person, 20-year-old Stefan Michael Pfeiffer, was ejected and died. Three others were hospitalized. 

Police did not believe that the driver stepped on the breaks before losing control, Russo said.

“The collision of that magnitude – being that two of those survivors were ejected from the vehicle, and the other one remained inside the vehicle – you can imagine that there was a significant trauma,” Russo explained. 

The extensive damage to the building caused power outages in the area as the car also took down power lines and came to rest about 100 feet from the site of the initial crash, Russo said.

663 residents and businesses were without power until Saturday afternoon.

“The structure that was hit was yellow tagged and sustained significant damage,” Pasadena city spokeswoman Lisa Derderian said in a statement Monday. “Thankfully it was vacant and nobody was in it at the time.”

Source: NBC Los Angeles

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