Rene Jaime of Las Vegas was staying with family during a trip when he went out Friday evening to visit a store and get his car washed, according to the San Diego County Medical Examiner's Office.
About 11:45 p.m., Jaime drove his Scion xB hatchback into the mechanized car wash in the 2100 block of East Valley Parkway in Escondido. While the car was going through the cleansing system, Jaime stepped out for unknown reasons and was dragged into part of the mechanism, winding up wedged between it and his vehicle.
Alerted by an alarm signaling a malfunction in the equipment, a witness investigated and found Jaime trapped inside the car wash, Escondido Police Department Sgt. Chris Leso said.
Patrol officers were able to free the victim by lifting and moving his car, and paramedics took him to Palomar Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, Leso said.