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News Release
Three-car crash leads to one fatality, one in custody - 05/23/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

DATE: May 23, 2023

Three-car crash leads to one fatality, one in custody 

Salem, Ore. — At approximately 3:00 a.m. Sunday, May 21, Salem Police officers and other emergency personnel responded to the intersection of Lancaster DR and Beverly AV NE on the report of a three-vehicle collision.

The Traffic Team’s preliminary investigation revealed the operator of a passenger vehicle was traveling southbound on Lancaster DR when it struck the rear end of another car with two occupants and also struck a mid-size crossover SUV with two occupants. 

The driver of the passenger vehicle fled from the scene before police arrived. One of the four victims of the collision was transported to Salem Health with life-threatening injuries. Traffic Team investigators were later able to identify a potential suspect in the incident; however, the driver surrendered himself to law enforcement authorities before he was located by police. The hit-and-run suspect, identified as 27-year-old Gustavo Sosa, was taken into custody yesterday afternoon, May 22. 

Sosa was lodged at the Marion County Jail on the following charges:

  • Assault, second degree
  • Driving under the influence of intoxicants
  • Reckless driving
  • Reckless endangering, four counts
  • Hit and run vehicle-injury
  • Assault, fourth degree

The person who was hospitalized because of the collision, a 16-year-old boy, died from his injuries early this morning, May 23. The Salem Police Department does not identify minors involved in criminal investigations.

Other charges for Sosa considered by the Marion County District Attorney’s Office are expected.

The intersection remained closed for approximately six hours for the investigation. The case remains an open investigation.

Sosa’s arraignment is scheduled for today at 2:30 p.m. at the Marion County Criminal Court Annex, and therefore, all inquiries into this investigation must be directed to the Marion County District Attorney’s Office.

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