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Collision outside Delhi leaves one dead

POSTED November 21, 2017 10:08 p.m.

A suspected case of drunk driving claimed the life of a Merced man Sunday along the outskirts of Delhi, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The deceased was identified as Thomas Gonzalez, 45, of Merced.

Gonzalez was a passenger in a 2006 Nissan Titan driven by Kevin Mitchell Hernandez, 41, of Merced. Hernandez has been arrested on suspicion of felony vehicular manslaughter and felony driving under the influence causing great bodily harm and/or death.

Hernandez was driving his vehicle on the Golden State Boulevard overpass, near Highway 99 in Delhi around 4:30 p.m. Sunday. According to the California Highway patrol, he lost control of the vehicle, causing it to strike a guardrail along the overpass.

The vehicle flipped over and off the overpass, landing on the highway on its roof.

Two other passengers in the Nissan sustained major injuries and were taken by air ambulance to a hospital in Modesto. The two passengers were identified as Jeremy Santos, 40, of Atwater and Mike Rivera, 43, of Merced.

Hernandez sustained moderate injuries from the collision and was treated at a local hospital before being released and booked into Merced County Jail.

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