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California Briefing / VICTORVILLE

Girl standing on freeway killed

August 07, 2008|Francisco Vara-Orta

A 14-year-old girl who ran from a home early Tuesday saying she was "going to kill herself" died after she stood still in traffic on Interstate 15, authorities said.

According to a statement from the California Highway Patrol, Crystal Pasalis left the home about 12:05 a.m.

She went to the freeway, jumped a fence, ran across northbound lanes, climbed over the center divider and stood in southbound traffic, the statement said. She was hit and killed by a tractor-trailer.

The driver, who thought he had seen animals in the road, swerved to miss the girl, but the right side of his trailer struck her, the statement said.

The 41-year-old driver, Benito Rael of Albuquerque, N.M., pulled over and tried to help the girl, but she was pronounced dead at the scene, CHP officials said.

Although she ran from a home in Victorville, Pasalis was a resident of nearby Adelanto, said Deputy Andrew Avery of the San Bernardino County coroner's office.

In a separate case Tuesday morning, a Santa Ana man killed himself by stepping in front of a tractor-trailer in the northbound lanes of the 57 Freeway in Placentia, police said.

Corrine Loomis, a spokeswoman for the Placentia Police Department, said the 31-year-old man stood in the far right lane with his arms raised when he was struck at 8:57 a.m.

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