General Crime

* Vaea Tangitau Salt Arrested For Oakland Major Crash

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Oakland police have released additional details about the second collision that occurred Friday on Foothill Boulevard, leaving six people injured.Alcohol appeared to be a factor in the crash, according to police spokesman Officer Jeff Thomason. Thomason said the crash occurred at 2:23 p.m. when a white Jeep Cherokee that was “exhibiting signs of sideshow activity and driving in a reckless manner” eastbound on Foothill Boulevard near 24th Avenue collided with a blue Acura Legend. The three occupants of the Acura and the driver and two passengers in the Jeep Cherokee were all hospitalized, Thomason said.Police tonight identified the driver of the Jeep as Orinda resident Vaea Tangitau Salt, 19. He reportedly crossed over into westbound traffic, hitting the Acura head-on. Salt has since been arrested and transported to Santa Rita jail,Thomason said. Investigators found alcohol inside the Jeep Cherokee, Thomason said.Salt’s two passengers were also transported to local hospitals in serious condition. The driver of the Acura, John Wong, 58, of Oakland, and his two passengers were also taken to nearby hospitals. One passenger is listed in critical condition, while Wong and the other passenger sustained serious injuries, according to Thomason.This is the second major crash to occur in Oakland, and on Foothill Boulevard, today. The first incident occurred at about 10:30 a.m. when members of the Police Department’s gang suppression unit who were at Foothill Boulevard and 62nd Avenue tried to stop a gold 1991 Toyota Camry reported stolen in Oakland on Thursday.Capt. Rick Orozco said the driver fled southbound on 62nd Avenue, ran a stop sign and hit a 1995 white Saturn. A 66-year-old woman who was in the front passenger seat died in the crash.The Saturn’s other two occupants, a 68-year-old man and a 45-year-old woman, are being treated at a local hospital but are expected to survive, Orozco said.The driver of the Toyota is a 17-year-old male who has “an extensive criminal history” as a juvenile,according to Orozco.
He and two of the three passengers in the Toyota suffered only minor injuries, according to Orozco. The other passenger remains hospitalized, he said. The three passengers are 14, 18 and 19 years old.The driver could face charges as serious as manslaughter or murder. He is also being investigated for possibly driving under the influence of alcohol, Orozco said.He said the fatality “could have been avoided if the driver had stopped.” Thomason said the Oakland Police Department has twice the usual number of officers on duty tonight to try to combat crime and crack down on drunk drivers.He said a checkpoint has been set up in East Oakland to target people who are driving under the influence of alcohol.

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