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Hit-and-Run Crash on Alisal Rd near Hartnell Rd Kills Maria Elena Chavez de Chavez, 67, of Salinas

Monterey County, CA — According to KSBW, early Wednesday morning, May 22, 2024, a fatal hit-and-run claimed the life of 67-year-old Salinas woman Maria Elena Chavez de Chavez.

The crash, occurring at approximately 6:17 AM, involved two vehicles on Alisal Road, north of Hartnell Road. The California Highway Patrol (CHP) reports that the collision happened when a Nissan Altima, driven by a 68-year-old Salinas man, was traveling south on Alisal Road with de Chavez in the passenger seat.

The driver was preparing to make a left turn into an agricultural field when a white 2001 GMC Yukon, whose driver has been identified as 64-year-old Adolfo Rosales Diaz of Salinas, attempted to pass by moving into the northbound lane. The GMC struck the rear of the Nissan as it turned left, causing the Nissan to veer off into a ditch on the east side of the road. The GMC came to a stop facing the wrong direction in the southbound lane.

Emergency responders rushed the Nissan’s driver to Natividad Medical Center, where he was treated for severe head injuries. Tragically, de Chavez was pronounced dead at the scene.

Before authorities arrived, Diaz fled the scene but was apprehended six hours later, just a few miles from the crash site. Diaz now faces serious charges, including hit-and-run causing injury and death, as well as vehicular manslaughter. According to the Monterey County Jail, his bail has been set at $10,000.

The community mourns the loss of Maria Elena Chavez de Chavez, and authorities continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding the crash. It remains unclear whether alcohol or drugs played a role in this heartbreaking incident. The CHP urges anyone with information to come forward as they piece together the events that led to this tragedy.

Wrongful Death Claims

Whether or not a crash results in criminal charges for one of those involved, families who have lost a loved one in a fatal collision may be able to file a wrongful death claim with the insurance provider of the at-fault driver.

The compensation provided by a wrongful death claim can relieve the financial burdens created by medical expenses, burial costs, and the loss of income to support any dependents of the deceased.

Insurance companies will work to reduce any claim they cannot deny, which is where the help of a knowledgeable personal injury attorney can prove invaluable by negotiating on behalf of victims and their families to ensure they receive proper compensation.

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