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SUV crashes into apartment, killing girl asleep in bed

An allegedly drunk driver crashed his Nissan Pathfinder into apartment building in Palmdale, Calif., on Sunday, police said. A 16-year-old high schooler inside was killed.
Tony Cheval/Associated Press
An allegedly drunk driver crashed his Nissan Pathfinder into apartment building in Palmdale, Calif., on Sunday, police said. A 16-year-old high schooler inside was killed.

PALMDALE, Calif. — A 16-year-old Southern California girl was killed while sleeping in her bed after an alleged drunken driver crashed his sport utility vehicle into her home early Sunday, authorities said.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said 20-year-old Roberto Rodriguez of Palmdale allegedly crashed his Nissan Pathfinder into a corner of an apartment building at 3:50 a.m., damaging two units.

When deputies arrived they found the SUV embedded in the building and the girl dead inside one of the apartments. The victim, a high school student, was not immediately identified.

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Rodriguez was taken to a hospital with minor injuries and has been booked on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter. He was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail.

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About half of the 11-unit building was evacuated because of leaking fuel from the vehicle, officials said. Most of the residents were expected to return to their apartments after the SUV was removed and inspectors determined whether the building was structurally sound.

Witnesses said the vehicle was traveling about 80 miles per hour at the time of the accident.

Palmdale is about 60 miles north of downtown Los Angeles.

Associated Press