19-Year-Old Willits Man Dies in Accident That Wasn’t Reported Until the Next Day

CHP Feature FatalityThis is a press release from the California Highway Patrol. The information has not been proven in a court of law and any individuals described should be presumed innocent until proven guilty:

On October 23th, 2016, at approximately 2330 hours, a single vehicle collision occurred near the intersection of US-I O I and Uva Drive, north of Ukiah. The collision was not reported until October 24th at 0833 hours. The driver was traveling northbound on Uva Dr, at an unknown speed, when the vehicle traveled off the road and collided into a tree. The driver[Juan Silva, age 18 of Willits], who was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the collision, sustained major injuries and was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. He was later released to the hospital for treatment of his injuries. The right rear passenger [Miguel Garcia, Jr., age 20 of Willits] declined medical aid. The left rear passenger [name withheld, age 19 of Willits] sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased at the scene. The cause of the collision remains under investigation by the Ukiah Area CHP.



  • LeAnna Carson-Hansen

    Wow. Sad for the family of the deceased and hope justice is swift for the “alleged” DUI driver. I wonder if his major injuries medical care are being paid for by his insurance or the tax payers?

    To wait so long to report the accident immediately should result in some sort of additional charges. Then again the lightly injured man may of not been able to get out of the wreck to report it?

    Now the sticky icky question that will surly upset some.

    Did the driver have a valid license?

    Was he insured?

    Was his vehicle prior to the accident in good working order?


    Is he a legal resident of the state?

    • Good god, what is wrong with you? just because it was a group of Latino young men you need to make a heartless comment.
      May his soul rest in peace and his family find solace.
      We all make mistakes. I know I do, especially when I was 18 and 19. Life changes in the blink of an eye. 1 gone too soon and many lives changed for ever. It’s sad.

    • Who cares where he’s from. Race didn’t kill the kid. Drunk driving did.

    • What the hell is wrong with you, A young man just died and the only thing you can think about was, was he a legal resident? because he has a Hispanic last what a stupid thing to say. Drunk driving was stupid but transcends race, everyone makes mistakes its just this one was really fucked because there was a loss of life.

      • J. Worthingham Fatback

        THIS one was 100% preventable! Get over your enabling attitude, and call it what it was…..a selfish and irresponsible bad choice that cost a life. Are you aware that every 30 minutes someone dies in a drunk driving crash? Its way past time to stop allowing this to happen. I am sorry for this loss of life. But I am also pissed that this is an incident that happens in the US 48 times a day.

        We can be saddened, because it is a horrific situation. But as long as people, when they are sober, make the decision to drink or use drugs, and then drive, it is a willful and avoidable death.

        RIP for this child, and peace to his family. AND to ALL the victims of this ongoing tragedy.

        • Good thing the state wants to tax tobacco instead of alcohol, eh? So many more deaths due to alcohol than tobacco but alcohol must have the stronger lobby.

    • Heartbroken coach

      These boys grew up in the Willits Community. They were friends. Having a driver’s license, insurance, or legal status is the last thing on my mind. I can’t imagine why one would even say that. Shame on you!
      I’m thinking about the heartache of the family. I think about my own son. And can’t fathom the loss!

    • him being a resident should be the last of your worries. Your heartless comment is unneeded. Let the families mourn their loved one. The town of willits is hurt. A mom lost her son and you’re worried about all the legal stuff?? Please take your disrespect somewhere else.

    • What is wrong with you????

    • You are ridicoulous. Have some respect!
      This was someone’s child for crying out loud!

    • Race, nationality, skin color has nothing to do with this!! I child is dead and a mother mourns!! Alcohol is the culprit not the drivers blood line!! And I would think you of all people would not judge by skin color Ms. C.H!!!

    • Ha! LeAnna you totally stepped into this one,,,hold on to your britches!!!

    • [edit] You have no idea how upsetting this is. The family members and friends are reading this horrible situation, and they see your comment. It’s racist, cruel, and extremely rude. You have no heart. Keep your [edit] comment to yourself. The family and friends are mourning over a son, brother, cousin, and friend. [edit]

    • Let me guess your a Trump supporter smh.

    • CARSON-Hansen Such racist disregard for human life. Why would his “legal status” matter? These were young Willits kids out to have fun and a good time. I am sure none of them were forced into the vehicle, unfortunately one of them was too intkxocated to drive. Your racist, bigot remarks disgust me. They were young kids just out of high school who grew up in our local community. Who cares about his nationality or “legal status”, who cares if he had a license, who cares if he had insurance and who cares about the color of his skin, these were kids from our local community, we don’t look at the youth and see skin tone. I am sure this youngster is already feeling devastated by the loss of his young friend. Racist people like yourself are the real problem. Learn to spread caring sentiment not hateful resentment. Must be watching to much Fox News and #LoserTrump. My condolences to the family and this kids friends.

    • [edit] One person. Is dead and all you talk about is tax payers and is he legal?[edit]

  • 18, 19 & 20. Lives changed forever. All equally to blame no doubt. Try for empathy.

  • If there was a fatality how could it not be reported until the next day? Did they leave the scene and then not report it for a day or otherwise? A large part of the story has been left out.

    • Yeah. 101 is patrolled.

      RIP to the deceased and condolences to his family.

    • I agree. I’ll contact CHP tomorrow and try to determine what happened.

    • Uva Drive is a busy road. This sounds like they were sitting in the car and injured. Maybe someone stopped to see if they were ok. Seems the hospital would be the ones to report it.

    • It happened at 11:30 pm so it was likely reported the next day

    • Henchman Of Justice

      Exactly what HOJ is wondering…..

      About 9 hours after collision, the collision is reported.

      Was the 19 year old dead for 9 hours before being reported, or did he die, and then they reported………..as if hurt on scene and could not report for hours, someone else find them….holes…..

  • Sad, condolences to all families involved.

  • I’m so sorry for the loss of the young life taken. I know his cousin, a friend of my son’s. I truly feel for his parents and pray they get through this. For those injured, I also send a prayer and hope this makes an impact on future choices

  • From the photo in the Ukiah paper, http://www.ukiahdailyjournal.com/general-news/20161024/one-man-killed-one-arrested-after-crash-on-uva-drive the car was well off the west side of Uva Drive, and probably not visible from the freeway. As stretched out as the Ukiah CHP’s area is, they probably don’t patrol the off-hwy roads a whole lot in between radio calls and traffic stops ON the major roads.

    The injured and apparently DUI driver must have still been either in or near the car in the morning when it was spotted by a passer-by. R.I.P.

  • Pretty sure I heard the scanner last night reporting two injured men showing up at Ukiah Valley Medical Center and then law enforcement were out looking for accident scene. It sounded like they also hoped to find something they said was missing.
    Heartbreaking. Condolences to the families, friends and loved ones.

  • That scanner traffic could fit the scenario that’s been reported so far, but leaves a lot of questions of course. Alcohol, trauma and panic can all “make you stupid,” so one wonders if the two survivors couldn’t or WOULDN’T give the cops the location of the crash. And whether they even mentioned that they had left their dying or dead buddy in the car.

    A sad, sad situation for all involved and their families.

  • Was is not reported or not found until a late date and time.? Anyway it’s tragic that a life so young was taken away. May God put his hand on all involved and give them piece.

  • It was only 9 hours after. The report makes it sound like it was a full day later. Happened just before midnight and reported at 8:30 AM. Don’t know the circumstances, but it’s sad either way. My heart goes out to the families involved.

  • Those poor kids. Every life altered Don’t drink and drive. People think they are so much better so much smarter than the laws. Some stupid people do it their whole lives and FINALLY get caught in their 50’s! They are the angry whining eternal victims who then bum rides, attend classes (that accomplish nothing) pay fines and continue to blame everyone else for their poor choices and addiction. Please Get help if you are alcohol dependent , abuse alcohol, or worse are addicted. The lives you may save are numerous!! (They include you, future passengers, fellow drivers and their passengers, your family, and you..dont be so selfish. Think of the costs!! )

  • LeAnna Carson-Hansen

    Talk about folks jumping to conclusions.

    I asked if he was a legal resident of the state.

    If so then hopefully he was insured.

    Your responses show that you read into a part of my post, and formed your presumption of what I meant.

    You chose to be offended.

    Well I take no offense at your right to speak your mind as well.

    Yes, it is horrid to lose a child even though he was an adult, as a passenger in a DUI incident.

    For all those with your knickers in a twist, think about the lives of the two who survived as well and how greatly impacted their future will be over this incident. The driver will face much in the coming months aside from healing from this.

    Having lost a family member to DUI/Impaired uninsured driver always brings back the horror of my brother’s death when I read of DUI fatalities.

    And in my family’s case it was an uninsured driver, who was a not legal resident of the state. The driver had no registration for the vehicle he used to kill my brother. The driver did not have a valid license, nor insurance.

    The only reason justice was served to prosecute the driver was because the DA’s Victim Advocate fought for our family and my deceased brother.

    The path ahead for the driver’s family will be hard, and as well as the lives of so many who were friends of all three men.

    Hopefully there will be much encouragement and support for them.

    Yes, the hard questions come up, even though some may be offended by them.

    For those who swore at me and called me heartless, well I guess you just don’t understand what it is like to see the destroyed corpse of your loved one killed by the actions of another.

    Yes peace and love and all the groovy stuff does not matter when you are burying your loved one killed by the reckless actions of another.

    • You led people to believe that this is what was implied. Hell, you even put a spoiler tag that it was going to make people upset. Sorry for your personal loss, but you wrote the narrative.

    • Sorry for the loss of your brother, but what you wrote earlier is still offensive. You saw hispanic-sounding names and began insinuating that they’re undocumented. Trying to walk back your comments doesn’t make them less wrong. Trump supporter, by any chance?

    • Sorry for your loss Ms. CH but as a teacher you knew exactly how you were writing your comment. You have made a poor assumption and true colors have been shown. We here in the local community, where you teach our children and grandchildren, have seen these colors shine thru a time or two. Don’t try to back peddle. You said wrote it as you intended it.

  • http://www.pressdemocrat.com/news/6238136-181/victim-of-fatal-crash-identified?utm_campaign=trueAnthem%3A+Trending+Content&utm_content=5812e96504d30101c04681c0&utm_medium=trueAnthem&utm_source=facebook

    Press Democratic update. The gist? Guy (who they laughably refer to as “gentleman “) THOUGHT he was on hwy 101 . 11:30pm. Heavy rain. Drove off road without braking. Sounds like surviving occupants were unconscious or too frightened to act for multiple hours. No cell service. Flagged someone down borrowed their phone TO CALL.A FRIEND!!(who alerted CHP) and the kid still blew over the limit at 830a.m…. !

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