Street takeovers in Costa Mesa, Anaheim turn deadly, causing 1 fatality, 2 injuries, 5 arrests
Two incidents involving a mass vehicle takeover of streets in Anaheim and Costa Mesa early Thursday are being investigated in connection to a fatal crash and a hit-and-run collision that led to the hospitalization of a teenager, according to police.
Sgt. Jacob Gallacher with the Anaheim Police Department said the station received a call at around 1:30 a.m. regarding an injury accident and a downed pedestrian off the 400 block of Euclid Street, in the parking lot of the Anaheim Plaza.
“The first officers there noticed there were about 200 cars in the parking lot. A car club had assembled in the parking area,” Gallacher said, describing the victim as an 18-year-old female from Newport Beach.
“There was a vehicle that was doing some ‘doughnuts’ and ended up clipping her — she ended up going down and was unconscious by the time officers got there,” he continued.
According to police, the driver involved in the incident identified himself to a witness and then left the scene. Officers said they located the man — Preston James Shea, 19, of Anaheim — about two hours later in a residential part of town.
The suspect was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and-run, felony reckless driving causing bodily injury and assault with a deadly weapon, non-firearm and was being held Thursday morning at the Anaheim Police Station in anticipation of a transfer to the Orange County Jail. Shea was being held on $50,000 bail, according to a police news release.
Videos taken during the incident, capturing the hit-and-run, were said to be circulating on social media and have been seen by police. Gallacher said the victim was taken to a nearby hospital, where she was treated for her injuries and was in stable condition Thursday morning.
The police activity in the area caused the cars assembled at Anaheim Plaza to disperse, according to Gallacher. It is believed the incident may be tied to another traffic collision that occurred hours later in Costa Mesa.
Costa Mesa Police Department spokeswoman Roxi Fyad said the station received a call from Anaheim police at around 2:25 a.m. indicating multiple cars dispersed from the scene at Anaheim Plaza were heading in the direction of Costa Mesa.
At around the same time, a police dispatcher received a call from witnesses on scene reporting a collision involving a pickup truck at the intersection of Sunflower and Hyland avenues.
“Our officers responded and found a flipped vehicle and spectators in the area,” Fyad said.
Lanes were blocked as the department’s Major Accident Investigation Team responded to the scene. Officers reported three people had been inside the truck at the time of the collision.
According to a release issued Thursday afternoon, bystanders who’d seen the incident reportedly flipped the truck onto its side, where a male passenger was found unconscious. Officers attempted to administer CPR to the victim, but the man succumbed to his injuries. The victim was identified as 23-year-old Sergio Marroquin Jr.
Fyad said the driver of the vehicle — 22-year-old Los Angeles resident Mynor Augusto Esquivelvalle, reportedly a cousin of Marroquin’s — remained on scene to talk to investigators and was later arrested and booked on suspicion of murder.
The other passenger was taken to a nearby hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, while one female and two male spectators at the scene were arrested on suspicion of aiding and abetting in connection to the incident, Costa Mesa police later reported.
Any witnesses to the incidents or anyone who may have captured video footage at either scene is encouraged to call the Costa Mesa Police Department at (714) 754-5264. To report street racing or street takeovers in Costa Mesa, call (714) 754-5252.
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