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VENTURA COUNTY ROUNDUP / East County | Santa Barbara

Car Accident Took Life of Missing Man

September 28, 2000|SUE FOX

A Studio City man reported missing two days ago was found dead Wednesday, the victim of a traffic accident on a seldom-traveled mountain road north of Santa Barbara, authorities said.

Rodney John Buckner, 42, died when his pickup truck skidded off Stagecoach Road near Highway 154 and plunged down a 100-foot embankment, said California Highway Patrol Officer Ken Guerrier. The accident probably happened Friday night, as Buckner headed north toward Santa Maria, where he had a house and often spent his weekends, officials said.

Investigators believe Buckner's truck drifted onto the shoulder of the road on a curve and that he over-corrected, swerving to the left and over the edge. Buckner, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the vehicle.

Buckner's girlfriend, Seraphine Segal of Studio City, reported him missing to Los Angeles police on Monday, said Lt. Mike Burridge of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department.

Friends and co-workers from the Southern California Edison office in Thousand Oaks, where Buckner worked, joined the search, distributing fliers with his picture in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. It was a friend who finally found Buckner and his white pickup truck Wednesday morning off the winding, narrow road, Guerrier said.

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