Israel Bermudez, Paloma Casares – A 39-year-old man suspected of driving under the influence in a truck plowed into two vehicles stopped at a red light in Winchester, killing two people and injuring two others, authorities said Thursday. Delwyn Dewion Randle of Westminster was arrested after the wreck at about 11:40 a.m. Wednesday on Domenigoni Parkway at Leon Road. Randle was booked into the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning on suspicion of DUI resulting in death.
The suspect is being held on $100,000 bail. His case was under review Thursday by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office. Randle allegedly caused the deaths of Israel Bermudez, 25, of Buena Park, and Paloma Casares, 32, of Hemet. According to the California Highway Patrol, the suspect was at the wheel of a 2013 International box truck going eastbound on Domenigoni at an unknown speed without slowing after the light turned red at the intersection.
In the same lane as the box truck, stopped for the light, were a 2023 Chevrolet Silverado pickup and a 2022 BMW X3, which was just ahead of the Chevy, CHP Officer Jason Montez said. He said that adjacent to the BMW, also stopped for the light, was a Dodge Durango SUV.
Montez said the driver of the Chevy spotted the box truck barreling toward his rear and managed to maneuver to the left to avoid being struck flush. “The International box truck crashed into the right rear of the Chevy before crashing into the rear of the BMW, pushing it in a southeasterly direction into a ditch,” the CHP spokesman said. “The truck continued and crashed into a light pole, sheering it off at its base, before crashing into a fire hydrant.”
Debris struck the Dodge, but didn’t cause major damage. Riverside County Fire Department paramedics arrived within 15 minutes and pronounced Bermudez and Casares, both of whom were in the BMW, dead at the scene. Casares was driving the sedan, and Bermudez was in the left rear passenger seat.
The third occupant of the BMW, in the front passenger seat, identified only as a 31-year-old Beaumont man, suffered moderate injuries, according to the fire department. The Chevy driver, identified only as a 32-year-old Hemet woman, suffered minor injuries. She and the BMW passenger were taken to a hospital for treatment. Their conditions Thursday could not be confirmed.
Montez alleged that officers determined Randle was under the influence of drugs, and he was taken into custody without incident. He did not require medical attention. The driver and passenger in the Dodge were not hurt.
Eastbound lanes were completely shut down until late Wednesday afternoon because of the crash, which caused 50 gallons of diesel and oil from the box truck to spill onto the roadway and flow into storm drains, according to the fire department. A hazardous materials unit conducted a clean-up operation.
The CHP said the hydrant was completely dislodged, sending a geyser of water 80 feet into the air. Eastern Municipal Water District personnel capped the broken device.