Three middle school students were killed, and another was critically injured in a hit-and-run crash in California on Saturday night, according to sources.
After hitting the four girls two of whom were in wheelchairs on Camp Rock Road in Lucerne Valley, the two occupants of the 2002 Chevy Silverado abandoned the vehicle and dashed into the dark desert with flashlights, according to the Daily Press.
Willow Sanchez, 11, Daytona Bronas, 12, and Sandra Mizer, 13, were the three girls pronounced deceased at the scene, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office.
The surviving victim, who was taken to a local hospital, was identified by the Press as eighth-grader Natalia Coe, who was apparently one of the two in a wheelchair.
According to the Press, the location includes desert topography with sand that is difficult to traverse for wheelchair users, which one school board member believes is why the four girls were strolling down the asphalt road when they were hit from behind.
“They just got out for summer break,” school Trustee Jessica Risler told the paper. “This is their first opportunity to have sleepovers, hang out, play, and just be children again after a year in lock-down.”
According to the Los Angeles Times, the secluded area had no sidewalks.
Highway Patrol Officer Dan Olivas told the Times, “It’s quite barren out there, and there are practically any shoulders at all.”
According to the press, a guy and woman came out of the truck, appeared inebriated, and raced into the desert when they saw the girls on the street.