Fight following crash on freeway leaves both drivers dead

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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VIDEO: Fight Following Crash On California Highway Leaves Both Drivers Dead

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

A fight that broke out following an early morning crash on a California interstate ended with both drivers dead, according to state troopers.

California Highway Patrol officials told the Sacramento Bee that a call came in shortly before 4 a.m. reporting a crash on Interstate 5 in the Natomas community, just north of Sacramento. The drivers, both men, stopped their vehicles in the area of Del Paso Road, got out and began to fight.

One driver struck the other with a blunt force object, killing him, the Bee reported.

"It escalated from a traffic collision to a fight to a homicide," Mike Zerfas, spokesman for the Highway Patrol, told the Bee.

The still-living driver began walking north on the freeway -- at which point he was struck and killed by a passing motorist, Zerfas said.

Both men were pronounced dead at the scene. The freeway was closed for more than eight hours as detectives investigated the crime scene.

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A witness told CBS Sacramento that the blunt object used in the homicide appeared to be a baseball bat. The woman, who asked to remain anonymous, said she was driving to work Sunday morning when she came upon the scene.

"I look over to my right and there's a body in the middle lane," the woman told the television station. "At that point, I panicked and was trying to protect the body with my car so the other vehicles wouldn't run him over."

The woman said the man with the bat was hitting windows on passing vehicles as the other man lay on the roadway. Afraid, she drove off, she said.

Zerfas told KXTL-TV in Sacramento that fights between angry motorists are a common occurrence, but not in the way Sunday's fight went down.

"Fights on the freeway between angry motorists, whether it's the result of a traffic collision or some sort of road rage-type incident, occur quite often," Zerfas said. "Usually not in the middle of the lanes like it happened here."

A death in such a situation is rare, much less two deaths.

The motorist who hit the homicide suspect remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators, the news station reported. It was not yet known if any charges would be filed against that driver.

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