Driver in street race strikes motorist in East Village: 1 injured in street racing incident

Crash on 16th and G streets

SAN DIEGO - A street racing-related crash in the East Village early Friday morning seriously injured an innocent bystander and landed one of the racers in jail, San Diego police said.

The three-vehicle wreck occurred shortly after 2 a.m., when an eastbound 1997 Honda Civic went through a red light at G and 16th streets at high speed and smashed into a Buick, according to police.

The latter vehicle then spun around and hit a 2000 Chevrolet Camaro whose driver had been keeping pace with the man behind the wheel of the Honda, police said.

"It was obvious to witnesses that they were racing each other," SDPD public affairs Lt. Kevin Mayer said.

The driver of the Civic, who appeared to be in his 20s, jumped out of the crumpled car and ran off with another man and a woman who had been riding with him.

Officers investigating the crash arrested the driver of the Camaro, 22-year-old Lucas Patrick Martinez, at the scene.

Medics took the 52-year-old San Diego man who had been driving the Buick to UCSD Medical Center for treatment of fractured ribs, Mayer said.

Martinez was booked into county jail on suspicion of reckless driving causing injury, driving while intoxicated and engaging in an illegal street race, all misdemeanors. He was expected to be arraigned Tuesday morning.

The driver of the Honda and his companions remained at large Friday afternoon, the lieutenant said.

Steve Dunetz told 10News he was watching TV when he heard the crash. He immediately ran out to his balcony.

"[The driver] took off in the middle of the road, where the car was," Dunetz said.

He said the driver ran south on16th Street and at least two passengers ran in different directions.

"They all ran like cockroaches," he said.

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