A spate of vehicle accidents in the past week killed a Prescott Valley man, seriously injured a Prescott woman, and resulted in the arrests of two drivers.
Jerry Pauley, 49, of Prescott Valley died last Wednesday when his vehicle struck a sign and several trees on Frontage Road near Navajo and Highway 69.
Prescott Valley Police said witnesses told officers that Pauley, driving a white 1995 Chevy Tahoe, exited Northridge Drive and turned west. The vehicle then turned around and drove at high speed eastbound on Frontage Road, failed to negotiate a curve, and struck the sign and trees.
Police said there was no indication of braking prior the crash.
Pauley was not wearing a seatbelt. Police are still investigating the accident, but there is no information at this time whether impairment was a factor in the crash.
A Prescott woman is being treated at a Phoenix hospital for her injuries after the Chevy Blazer she was driving crossed the median on Highway 69 Monday night, March 5, and drove into oncoming traffic before striking a concrete structure 70 feet off the roadway, said Prescott Valley Police Sgt. Brandon Bonney.
At 8:47 p.m., police and emergency medical services answered a call about a serious injury crash at StoneRidge and Highway 69 and found the 39-year-old woman's SUV off the roadway near the northeast corner of the intersection. The driver is believed to have had a medical problem that led to the crash, Bonney said.
Central Yavapai firefighters extricated the woman from the SUV, but she could not be airlifted to a trauma center because of the strong winds. Paramedics took the woman to Yavapai Regional Medical Center East Campus where she was stabilized, and then emergency personnel transported her to Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center.
This past Sunday at about 1 a.m., the driver of a car that hit a traffic signal control box, putting the lights out of commission, managed to drive away before the car failed, a police spokesman said.
Ramon J. Olea, 30, of Prescott Valley, smashed into the control box at Windsong and Lakeshore drives with a black Chrysler 300, Bonney said. Officers who arrived on the scene spoke with a witness who described seeing "a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed leave the roadway," Bonney said, adding that after the car hit the box, it nearly struck the witness, and then left the area.
Officers realized the car was heavily damaged and would not get far, so they began a search, and found it in the 7800 block of Las Flores, being loaded onto a trailer, Bonney said.
When they confronted Olea, he first told police that he'd been on a bad dirt road before admitting to losing control and crashing, Bonney said.
Police arrested Olea and booked him on charges of aggravated criminal damage, endangerment, and striking a fixture on a highway.
This past Sunday evening, a motorcyclist who ran from police at high speeds ended up in a crash and was arrested, a police spokesman said.
Police arrested Greg Silvas, 22, of Prescott Valley, after an officer saw him driving at a "high rate of speed," said Bonney, and when he caught up to it near Valley View and Frontage, the bike had turned around and the tires were smoking.
Bonney said Silvas allegedly waved at the officer, who had his lights and siren on, as he passed.
Silvas crashed a short time later when he tried to turn onto Lynx Lake Drive. Bonney said he kicked the motorcycle and started to walk away.
Police took him to Yavapai Regional Medical Center.
Silvas told police he thought it was his mother chasing him, said Bonney. "He was asked if his mother drove a fully-marked police vehicles with lights and siren, and he said she did not," Bonney added.
Police booked Silvas into jail on charges of unlawful flight from law enforcement, reckless driving, and driving on a suspended license.