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Garden Grove, CA – Jolene Gardner and Her 9-year-old Daughter Payton Castillo Killed in Crash

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Garden Grove, CA – Jolene Gardner and Her 9-year-old Daughter Payton Castillo Killed in Crash

Posted on January 3, 2019 | Written By: iadminlaw

Jolene Gardner and Her 9-year-old Daughter Payton Castillo Killed in Garden Grove Crash

GARDEN GROVE, CA (January 3, 2019) – The two people who were killed in a crash on New Year’s Day in Garden Grove were identified by the Orange County Coroner’s Office. Jolene Gardner, 33 years old; and her daughter, Payton Castillo, nine years old, were killed in a crash on the 22 Freeway involving an alleged drunk driver. Both victims were residents of Hawthorne.

Castillo died at the scene of a chain-reaction crash, and Gardner died from her injuries after being taken to a hospital.

According to reports, Melvin Cleveland Branch—a resident of Orange—was suspected of driving under the influence. He was arrested on suspicion of DUI and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. He was involved in an accident early on Tuesday morning, a little before 1:00 a.m., in which four vehicles collided in the westbound lanes of the freeway, close to the exit for Valley View Street. Reports say that Branch had his 30th birthday on New Year’s Eve.

According to investigators, Branch had been driving a BMV sedan at a fast speed at the time he struck the back of a Lexus that had been traveling in the freeway’s carpool lane. The impact caused the Lexus to smash into a barrier wall. Branch then smashed into a Ford-150 pickup truck that Gardner had been driving. The pickup rolled over on its side, and went skidding across the freeway’s lanes. California Highway Patrol says the BMW and the truck came to a stop against a guard rail.

A fourth vehicle—described as a Mazda sedan—hit the pickup Gardner and her daughter were in, and then smashed into the divider in the center of the freeway. According to officials, the injuries Branch suffered were minor. After Branch was placed in a patrol car, he kicked out the back window and jumped from the vehicle before officers apprehended him.

No details are available at this time regarding the people who had been traveling in the Mazda and the Lexus. Their names, ages, gender, and cities of residence are not known from reports, and whether they suffered any injuries.

Hire a Car Accident Attorney in Garden Grove

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto collision, iAccident Lawyer strongly encourages you to call our Garden Grove car accident lawyers. Your experienced Car Accident Lawyer Garden Grove will provide you with the best legal representation and guidance that you need. Our offices are conveniently located throughout California and we conduct regular travels in the region to meet with clients. Contact Car Accident Lawyer today.

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