FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Despite the rainy weather, the family of 20-year-old Sandy Mendoza from Mendota gathered to pray the rosary at the spot where her life came to a sudden end.
The California Highway Patrol says she was the victim of a suspected DUI crash just outside of Kerman on Highway 180 and Shasta.
It happened around 9:15 Saturday night. A Honda driving west drifted into the eastbound lane, hitting an Acura with five people inside, including Sandy.
She was wearing her seat belt but didn't survive. Four others in the Acura were taken to the hospital.
"It was a dramatic crash," says Mike Salas with CHP. High speeds on both ends. The victim driver was unable to take any type of evasive action."
The CHP suspects 27-year-old Antonio Orosco was driving the Honda and under the influence of drugs at the time of the crash.
"Took it into his own hands to get behind the wheel while impaired," Salas said.
He was taken to the hospital with serious injuries. When Orosco's released, he will be booked into jail under the suspicion of drug impairment and vehicular manslaughter.
The CHP has cited almost 900 DUIs in the Fresno area so far this year and reports 90 deaths on roads in the Fresno area in 2022.
"Our lifeline is so easy now with that phone in our pocket, we can pull it out and do a ride share request," Salas said. "The last thing we want people to do is to get behind that wheel impaired even if they think they are not."