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Drunk Driving Car Collision on Chestnut Avenue, in Southeast Fresno

On Saturday, November 22, 2014,  a deadly hit and run collision occurred on Chestnut Avenue in southeast Fresno.  The automobile accident happened at approximately 11:20 PM.

A Nissan Pathfinder driven by Jacqueline Rivera, was stopped at a red light in the right-hand lane, on Chestnut, at Jensen Avenue.  In the car was Rivera’s husband; Jose Chavez, their son; Jose Chavez, daughter; Aaliyah Chavez, 11 years old, and Savanni Ung, their son’s girlfriend.

A Suzuki Sport Utility Vehicle, driven by Rafael Arce Pedroza, was speeding down Chestnut Ave.  Officers reported that he was driving while intoxicated.  The SUV crashed into the back of the Nissan as it was waiting for the light to turn green.

The Pathfinder rolled over three times and collided with a light pole.  The vehicle then burst into flames, after the gas tank ruptured.

Rivera and her daughter Aaliyah were unconscious from the accident, and were not able to get free of the burning car.  They died at the scene of the collision.

The other three victims were able to exit the Nissan and were taken to Community Regional Medical Center, in Fresno, for treatment of their wounds.

Pedroza fled the scene of the crash on foot and entered a nearby apartment complex.  He was later found hiding under a bed in his apartment.  The police arrested him on multiple counts including DUI and vehicular manslaughter.  He was taken to the hospital for injuries and then later jailed, awaiting trial.

 The police report may take several weeks to prepare—in the meantime we can probably obtain a cover sheet of the accident report for the family of the deceased.  Please let us help you during this trying time.  Attorney John Rozier, your lawyer for car crashes, wrongful deaths and personal injuries.  Call me at