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Police chase ends in fatal Rodeo crash that killed mother, injured twin sons; Suspect arrested

Deadly crash in Rodeo that killed mother caught on surveillance video
Deadly crash in Rodeo that killed mother caught on surveillance video 02:34

RODEO – A man was arrested Thursday following a fatal collision in Rodeo that left a mother dead and her two children injured.

Ralph Ellsworth White III, 20, of Vallejo, was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter, possession of a stolen vehicle, and three counts of pursuit causing death or great bodily injury, according to the Hercules Police Department.

He was being held in lieu of $375,000 bail. It was not immediately known if he has an attorney who can speak on his behalf.  

Rodeo fatal crash after police pursuit
Rodeo fatal crash after police pursuit. CBS

On Thursday at 7:27 p.m., officers received information from the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office about a stolen 2021 Mazda SUV heading toward Hercules on eastbound Interstate Highway 80.

An officer with the Hercules Police Department saw the vehicle exit the highway onto northbound Willow Avenue at the city's border with Rodeo.

Police said the driver of the Mazda began to accelerate, and the officer pursued the vehicle for a short time before the Mazda collided with a 2017 Nissan traveling south on Willow Avenue in the city of Rodeo.

The driver of the Mazda, identified as White, got out of the vehicle and ran northbound onto Parker Avenue.

Police set up a perimeter, and White was located a short time later at a nearby liquor store and was taken into custody.

The driver of the Nissan, a 31-year-old mother of twin boys who were also in the vehicle, was killed in the collision and pronounced deceased at the scene, police said.

The 6-year-old boys were injured in the collision and transported to the hospital.

Hercules Police said the fatality and the injuries resulted in county protocol being invoked notifying the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office to assist in the department's investigation along with the Sheriff's Office and the California Highway Patrol. investigation continues.

Police said more information was to be released as the investigation moved forward.

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