3 law enforcement officials injured in crash near school in Highland

HIGHLAND, Calif. (KABC) -- Three law enforcement officials were injured in a crash behind an elementary school in Highland on Wednesday, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.

The officials' injuries were described as severe but not life-threatening.

It all started at about 1:15 p.m., during the conclusion of a shooting investigation. A 2018 Nissan Sentra heading northbound lost control and slammed behind a patrol SUV in the area of 11th Street and Rogers Lane. After impact, the car flipped and struck another patrol vehicle.

During the crash the Sentra hit a patrol sergeant, patrol deputy and district attorney's investigator supervisor that were standing next to one of the emergency vehicles, according to sheriff's officials. All three were taken to a nearby trauma center, where they were conscious and alert, officials said.

It was unclear whether the driver of the Sentra was injured. He was later identified as Hugo Pineda Jr., a 20-year-old resident of Highland.

"It's early on in the investigation," said San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Marc Bracco. "We're going to find out if there was any type of impairment, if cellphone use could have impacted it. It appears it was unintentional, but the driver is unlicensed."

Upon investigation, officials determined Pineda did not have a driver's license, and he did not appear to be intoxicated or under the influence of a substance.

The cause of the crash was under investigation.

Nearby Warm Springs Elementary School, located in the 7400 block of Sterling Avenue, was placed on a brief lockdown.

As for the reported shooting, sheriff's officials later confirmed one or two unknown suspects fired a gun for unknown reasons and fled the scene in a dark-colored SUV. There were no victims in the shooting.
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