A passenger died after a suspected drunk driver slammed a vehicle into a parked Santa Ana police cruiser late Friday night, officials said.

Two Santa Ana police officers were sitting in their parked police unit in the area of Washington Avenue and Lowell Street when a Honda crashed head-on into the patrol vehicle at 11:20 p.m., the Santa Ana Police Department said in a news release.

Orange County Fire Authority paramedics responded and started treating the officers and people inside the Honda before they were all taken to a nearby hospital.

A passenger who was in the Honda was later pronounced dead at the hospital, police said.

The man behind the wheel of the Honda, Jesus Emmanuel Perez of Santa Ana, was arrested on suspicion of felony vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, according to the department.

Police said it appears the vehicle was headed east on Washington when it collided into the police unit, which was parked facing Lowell.

Photos released by police show major front-end damage to both vehicles. The Honda’s windshield appeared smashed.

No information was available on the officers’ conditions Saturday afternoon.

The crash remains under investigation and no further details were immediately available.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Investigator N. Guijarro at 714-245-8284 or the Santa Ana Police Department’s Traffic Division at 714-245-8200.


By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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