A high-speed chase in Texas last week involving human smuggling ended with one illegal immigrant dead and four others injured when their vehicle rolled over into a river, authorities said Tuesday.
The chase began just after 2 a.m. on Oct. 13, when a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper tried stopping a black Chevy pickup truck for a traffic violation on U.S. Route 377 in Edwards County, a DPS statement said.
The driver, identified as Ruben Sandoval, 40, of Austin, didn’t stop, the agency said. Dashcam footage from a DPS patrol vehicle shows the chase at excess speeds. At one point, Sandoval approached a curve and lost control.
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The vehicle landed in the Llano River and troopers are seen running to the car and going into the water.
Jorge Lopez, a 28-year-old Guatemalan citizen in the United States illegally, was killed at the scene. Four illegal immigrants from Honduras were rescued and taken to a hospital for unspecified injuries.
Sandoval, the driver, was arrested and is charged with five felony counts of the smuggling of persons causing death or bodily injury. He was also found with a small amount of methamphetamine, authorities said.
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“Criminal smuggling organizations continue to place profits over the lives of those they smuggle and the motoring public,” the agency said. “They continue to place illegal immigrants in dangerous situations and exploit them as a commodity.”