3 killed, 3 others hospitalized after car slams into unoccupied building in Pasadena

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Sunday, May 12, 2024
3 killed, 3 hospitalized after car slams into building in Pasadena
Three people were killed and three others hospitalized after a car slammed into an unoccupied building in Pasadena, authorities said.

PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- Three people were killed and three others hospitalized early Saturday after a car slammed into an unoccupied building in Pasadena, authorities said.

The single-vehicle crash was reported shortly after 2:30 a.m. near the intersection of Sierra Madre and Foothill boulevards, according to the Pasadena Police Department.

The six occupants of the Tesla Model 3 were described as being as young as 17 and as old as 22. Three of them were ejected in the crash, police Lt. Anthony Russo told ABC7.

The driver and two passengers were pronounced dead at the scene, the lieutenant said. The survivors were transported to a hospital with serious injuries and were listed in stable condition.

Surveillance video obtained by Eyewitness News shows a speeding Tesla before there's a sudden explosion as it crashes. The impact ripped the car apart.

The crash toppled a power line and prompted the closure of the intersection, which was later reopened.

Friends, devastated by the loss, gathered at the crash site later in the day.

One of the victims who died has been identified as Stefan Michael Pfeiffer. The 20-year-old was a student at Pasadena City College.

Coworkers say Esrom Fessemaye and the 22-year-old driver, Mohed Samuel, were also killed.

Samuel's younger sister was seriously injured, along with another man and woman.

Speed was a factor in the collision, Russo said, adding that the building was badly damaged by the impact.

Police say the Tesla was going at least double the speed limit when the driver ran a red light and lost control.

Russo said the car hit a curb, sending it into the air. The Tesla then struck a city light pole, a power pole and a building.

Investigators say it appears there were four people in the backseat - none were wearing seatbelts.

Police are also working to determine how fast the Tesla was going and if the Autopilot feature was on at the time of the crash. An investigation will also determine if drugs or alcohol were a factor.