Filipina killed in California hit-and-run

A+
A
A-

SAN JOSE, California—San Jose police are searching for the driver of a 2004 silver Mercedes Benz sedan involved in a hit-and-run collision accident that left two women dead, including 62-year-old Filipino-American Cristina de Leon Castro.

Also killed in the early morning crash was Carmen Savala, 63, who was driving a 2012 Toyota Yaris at around 3:15 a.m. Monday, Sept. 2, according to San Jose Police. Savala, a Hispanic, and Castro were on their way to the Mineta San Jose International Airport where they work as cooks for eateries managed by HMSHost Corp.

San Jose PD officer Albert Morales told FilAm Star that there has not been any significant breakthrough in their investigation nine days after the fatal accident near the intersection of Skyport Drive and North First Street.

Morales said that the driver of the abandoned Mercedes, believed to have fled on foot after broad-siding the Yaris, remains at large.

Castro died on the spot while Zavala died on the way to a local hospital.

Ramon de Leon Cabalona, son of Castro, told “Balitang America’s” Henni Espinosa that his mother just hitched a ride with Zavala that fateful day.

Minutes before the crash, two California Highway Patrol officers spotted the Mercedes speeding and weaving on northbound US Highway 101 and followed the vehicle for a traffic stop, CHP spokesman Chris Falkowski said.

Falkowski told CBS News the officers followed the Mercedes as it exited on the Brokaw-First Street off-ramp and activated their emergency lights.

The Mercedes then turned left on Brokaw Road and pulled over to the right shoulder appearing to yield to officers but instead accelerated southbound on North First Street, running a red light, Falkowski said.

The CHP officers aborted the pursuit and deactivated their emergency lights for safety reasons at Matrix Boulevard because of the busy city streets and the presence of several hotels and eateries in the area.

Police said the impact of the collision was so strong the women were killed even though the car’s air bags were deployed.

Police spokeswoman Sgt. Heather Randol said the Toyota was so badly damaged that police at first could not verify its make and model.

Randol said police obtained registration information from the Mercedes and are now tracking down the driver.

She said driver could be charged with felony hit-and-run for leaving the scene of accident.

Meanwhile, the SJPD and the CHP are urging anyone who may have seen the crash or have information on the identity of the Mercedes driver to call (408) 277-4654 or at http://www.svcrimestoppers.com.

The victims’ employer, HSMHost Corp., expressed support and condolences to the families of the deceased.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Cristina de Leon Castro and Carmen Maria Zavala. Our thoughts and prayers are with their families at this extremely difficult time,” said company spokeswoman Sarah Cody. “Cristina and Carmen will be truly missed by their HMSHost family.”

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • $14141131

    Don’t the police know who owns the M-Benz from its plate number? He could be the one driving because usually owners of high-end cars drive their own. Or the police conducted a silly investigation on the Hispanic victims’ case? Weird!

    • erica

      i agree, because the victims were minorities so there is no need for urgent investigation. so sad.

      • porener

        yeh…just like foreigners killed in PH

      • $14141131

        The Hispanic driver killed is an American not a foreigner. Probably her mother too.

      • JK1000

        Big troll…..Big Joe..

      • porener

        big everything

      • sanjuan683

        What minorities? hehehehehehehehehehehe I don’t believe that the minorities now in San Jose Ca are the white peoples. Many hispanics and orientals living there now. The whites are outnumber now in California. And the second language their is Spanish….

      • JK1000

        “Second language( their ?) there instead…is spanish” Really? California is part the U.S., just to remind you amigo..NO WAY JOSE..

      • crazy_horse_101010

        a great many living there are illegals from latin america and do not speak english period and its that way in jose and most of california. many thought my wife was mexican and tried to talk to her in spanish not english.

      • $14141131

        I agree. As a matter of fact, the mayor of Daly City is a Fil-Am. In a joke, Daly City is said to have more Pilipinos than Manila. So with Malpitas also. California was once a part of Mexico thus presence of Hispanic descendants is common. Notice that most places in California are Hispanics due to the friars’ influence before.

      • walaywalay

        AS A BLACK AMERICAN I THINK YOUR REMARK IS RACIST AND IMMATURE POLICE DO NOT ASK–WHAT RACE ARE YOU BEFORE RESPONDING TO A CALL HECK OBAMA IS BLACK HALF US POLICE FORCE IS BLACK THE US IS NOT STUCK IN THE 60’S LIKE THE RP WELCOME TO THE 20TH CENTURY WHERE WHITES WILL BE A US MINORITY BEFORE 2020
        The new census estimates, a snapshot of the U.S. population as of July 2012, comes a year after the Census Bureau reported that whites had fallen to a minority among babies. Fueled by immigration and high rates of birth, particularly among Hispanics, racial and ethnic minorities arenow growing more rapidly in numbers than whites.

      • crazy_horse_101010

        they must not watch the show COPS where many cops are minorities

      • crazy_horse_101010

        many of the cops in america especially california and border states the cops are hispanics or african american.

    • Olibo

      It might be a stolen car, that’s why the driver fled on foot.

      • $14141131

        With that impact of collision, the M-Benz driver must be seeking medical assistance for his injury. Can’t the police get information from hospitals or clinics? One alarming statement of the police is that they aborted their pursuit and deactivated their emergency lights. The guy they are pursuing must be a notorious fellow prompting the cops to wag their tails.

        BTW, stolen cars are reported immediately so the cops must know this.

      • walaywalay

        YOU ARE ASSUMING THAT HE GOT HURT-NOT TRUE–I WENT OFF CLIFF CAR ROLLED OVER 1600 FOOT EMBANKMENT DRIVER GOT KILLED I GOT KNOCKED OUT BUT WOKE WITHOUT EVEN A SCRATCH—GOD WORKS IN MYSTERIOUS WAYS

    • walaywalay

      NO GOOD IF HOT

  • Cavitekid

    The only reason the cops show up here for any reason is to see what they are going get out of the deal or because some big shot was involved and he demands to be looked after. And if it is involving a foreigner, then it is really big money for everyone.

  • maxxpineda

    No breakthrough after 9 days of investigation?? Trace the plate number.

    • crazy_horse_101010

      according to san jose papers they have the information on the car they cant find the driver who could be anywhere in 50 states. plate number is no good if the driver skipped town

      • walaywalay

        SORRY PAL BUT NO ONE SKIPS DNA THERE IS NO STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS ON MURDER

        UHH YEA THEY GOT THE CAR AND SO YEA PLATE TOO–the driver of the abandoned Mercedes, believed to have fled on foot
        BUT–WAS IT HOT? IF SO THEN DNA

      • crazy_horse_101010

        the papers didnt say anything about it being hot, just they were hunting for him, sooner or later they will find him there will be dna plus if he has a credit cards. phone cards he will be found. and yes there is no statute of limitations. i guess he blew a red light. me im guessing drunk driving but who knows. i hope they do catch him and let him rot in jail. if you are drunk and kill someone you are in big trouble..they didnt give a name but sometimes they do that in order not to tip them off.and have them run farther

    • walaywalay

      the driver of the abandoned Mercedes, believed to have fled on foot

      GOT PLATE BUT NO USE IF HOT CAR–BUT WHERE EVER WE GO WE LEAVE DNA BUT TAKES 2 WEEKS TO PROCESS AND HOPE HE GOT RECORD
      THE RP IS #2 IN THE WORLD IN UNSOLVED MURDERS RIGHT BEHIND MEXICO WHILE THE US IS TOPS IN SOLVING THEM–NO ONE SOLVES THEM ALL

  • hello stupids

    Minutes before the crash, two California Highway Patrol officers spotted
    the Mercedes speeding and weaving on northbound US Highway 101 and
    followed the vehicle for a traffic stop, CHP spokesman Chris Falkowski
    said.

    1 minutees before the crash ….how can they assume is the mercedes
    2 the accidents looks like head on collision of 2 cars

    3 it certainly do not look like a hit and run but a car accident of crossing lanes in highspeed

    4 U can say it fail to stop after the incident but certainly not hit and run by the look of the impact and
    5 there might be no other car involve and case closed

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94