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Mon, Feb. 17

Car plunges onto roadway, shuts down Highway 260

Officials closed a section of Highway 260 near Mission Lane temporarily Saturday after an accident on Mission Lane that sent a Ford Crown Victoria plunging 30 feet down an embankment before landing in the eastbound lane of Highway 260 and bursting into flames.

Yavapai County Sheriff's spokesman Dwight D'Evelyn said the driver of the Ford, Phoenix resident Sean Murphy, 23, hit a parked Nissan sedan while traveling east on Mission Lane.

Murphy continued driving down the road for several hundred feet tearing up 60 feet of brush and crashing through a barbed wire fence before launching over the embankment, D'Evelyn said.

A passing motorist helped Murphy from his car just before it burst into flames.

Emergency medical personnel took Murphy to the Verde Valley Medical Center for lacerations and abrasions.

A check of Murphy's blood alcohol content three hours after the accident showed a reading of 0.230 - nearly three times the legal limit, D'Evelyn said.

Deputies arrested Murphy on various counts, including extreme DUI, D'Evelyn said. Deputies cited Murphy and released him to his parents for follow-up medical care pending his next court date. No booking photo was available, D'Evelyn said.

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