CHP Investigating Fatal Crash on Highway 20 at Walker Ridge Road as Homicide
CLEARLAKE OAKS, CA (February 21, 2019) – What appeared to be a fatal crash occurred Thursday morning on Highway 20 in Clearlake Oaks is being investigated as a homicide, according to the California Highway Patrol.
The crash was reported just after 7:00 a.m., about a mile West of Walker Ridge Road and about two miles West of the Colusa County line.
Firefighters and CHP officials responded to the scene after receiving reports of a white Dodge Sprinter van that had gone into a ditch.
A passing motorist reported seeing the van traveling eastbound when it ran off the highway shoulder, went into the ditch and came to rest up against a tree.
When officers arrived, they located a male body in the van with fatal injuries. The man was later identified as a 41-year-old Patrick M. Weber of Santa Clarita.
Initially the crash did not appear unusual, but since then the investigation has revealed suspicious circumstances, according to the CHP.
An additional report from the CHP said officers observed there were red paint transfer marks to the driver’s side of the vehicle, indicating a possible hit-and-run collision or an intentional act.
Later on Thursday evening, as the investigation of the scene was continuing, Weber’s body was moved and it was decided to have an autopsy performed immediately.
The damage to the vehicle led to Weber’s cause of death not being immediately apparent. However, when the results of the autopsy came back, it was determined that Weber’s injuries were not consistent with a traffic crash, and it turned into a criminal investigation.
Weber’s family has been notified and investigators are working with them now to gather more information.
Investigators remain uncertain about when the incident occurred, the CHP said.
The investigation currently is a joint effort between the CHP Clear Lake Area office, the Northern Division Investigation Service Unit, the Northern Division MAIT and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Investigation Unit.
Anyone with information about the crash, who saw any unusual activity along Highway 20 early Thursday or who has information about Weber and his whereabouts in the days leading up to the incident are urged to call the CHP’s Ukiah Dispatch Center at 707-467-4000. Calls during business hours may be made to the Clear Lake Area CHP office at 707-279-0103.
No words can mend the broken hearts and sorrow felt during this delicate moment. Our deepest condolences and sympathies are with the family and friends of Patrick Weber.
If you suddenly lost a loved one in a tragic crash, contact us today at The Sweet Law Group. Our lawyers are highly skilled and experienced in handling delicate cases such as wrongful death. We want to help you through this difficult time so you can focus on other matters at hand. Let us fight for justice and proper compensation your family deserve. Call us for a free consultation at (800) 203-3061.