TEMPLETON — Four people were found dead Monday evening, June 29, after their car hit an oak tree on Neal Springs Road, the California Highway Patrol reported.
At approximately 9:31 p.m., Kegin Dakota York, 22, of Creston, was driving a 2007 Infiniti G35 sedan eastbound on Neal Springs Road in the vicinity of Hollyhock Road, with three passengers — Taylan Elaine Perez, 22, of Paso Robles, Karen Montescabrera, 21, of Paso Robles, and Shelby Lynn Biaggini, 23, of Bend, Ore.
The male driver passed a slower moving eastbound vehicle, which was traveling at approximately 45-50 mph in a 55 mph two-lane, undivided county road at a speed estimated by the witness to be 70 mph, CHP reported.
After passing this vehicle, the male driver accelerated to a high rate of speed east of Berry Patch Lane as the road transitioned into a series of curves and undulations. After cresting a small rise in the road east of Deer View Lane, the driver began to apply the vehicle’s brakes, CHP reported.
Due to the high speed, the braking maneuver, and steering input to the right, the vehicle began to rotate to the right in a clockwise manner toward the south side of the roadway, CHP reported. As the car left the road, the right-side tires dropped into a drainage culvert before it careened entirely onto the shoulder.
After leaving the roadway, the vehicle collided into a large oak tree and rotated around the tree in a counterclockwise manner, CHP reported. During this high-speed impact and subsequent rotation, one of the passengers was ejected from one of the rear seats despite wearing her seat belt.
The driver and other two passengers remained within the vehicle as it rotated around the tree before coming to rest on the shoulder and partially within the eastbound lane of Neal Springs Road. Although all occupants in the vehicle were restrained by their seat belts, the impact resulted in fatal injuries to the driver and all three passengers, CHP reported.
Although the collision’s leading cause was the driver’s high rate of speed, additional investigation is underway to determine any contributing factors. At this stage in the investigation, it is unknown if distracted driving, drugs and/or alcohol use were contributing factors in the collision, CHP reported.
Due to the extensive nature of the collision scene, Neal Springs Road was closed from Creston Road to Berry Patch Lane for several hours.
Any individuals who witnessed this collision or aspects leading up to the passing maneuver or the accident itself are encouraged to contact the Templeton office of the California Highway Patrol at 805-434-1822.