Driver Charged with Murder after Passenger Dies in Crash

According to KSAT, 22-year-old James Justice is being charged with murder after a high-speed chase with police ends in a fiery crash and the death of the passenger in his truck in Castroville, Texas.

Chase Reached Speeds of 100 mph 

Early Friday morning, police initiated a routine traffic stop for Justice and his passenger, 27-year-old John Gabriel Alvarado, for speeding and running a stop sign. Justice refused to stop, beginning a nearly 15-mile chase with police.

The chase ended when Justice slammed his truck into a tree on FM 471 off Highway 90, splitting the truck in half and setting it ablaze, says police. Alvarado died at the scene of accident, reports KSAT. Justice suffered several broken bones and was taken to the hospital.

According to KSAT, police are unsure why Justice didn’t stop when attempted to be pulled over. Police say Justice did have an outstanding warrant for unlawfully carrying a weapon. Justice is also facing charges for evading arrest.

Texas Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Highlights

According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), here are some statistics regarding motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2014:

  • There were 13,675 serious injury crashes in Texas in 2014 with 17,152 people sustaining a serious injury.
  • Fatalities in traffic crashes in rural areas of the state accounted for 55.86% of the state’s traffic fatalities.
  • Single vehicle, run-off the road crashes resulted in 1,384 deaths in 2014 (39.16% of all motor vehicle traffic deaths in 2014).
  • Of all persons killed in vehicles where restraint usage was applicable and usage was known in 2014, 43.8% were reported as not restrained when the fatal crash occurred.
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