On the early morning of March 31, 2012, at approximately 1:36 a.m., the Tucson Police Department was advised of a motor vehicle collision that occurred in the area of West Starr Pass and South La Cholla Road. The collision involved a single-vehicle, which had rolled over. Five individuals had been in the vehicle involved in the collision. All five were injured during the course of the accident.
Four of the vehicle occupants were transported to a local hospital with injuries ranging from minor to very serious. The other occupant succumbed to his injuries while at the collision scene and was pronounced deceased. He has been identified as 16-year old Tucson resident, Gabriel Casillas.
Detectives from the Traffic Investigations Unit responded to further the investigation. They learned that the five had been traveling westbound on West Starr Pass in a Black 2003 4-door Volkswagon Jetta. The driver of the vehicle lost control of it just east of the intersection with South La Cholla Road. The vehicle left the roadway on the southern curb line and rolled before coming to a stop after striking a retaining wall that runs parallel to the roadway. Mr. Casillas was believed to be a passenger in the vehicle. It has not yet been determined which of the other individuals was the driver.
Not all of the occupants have been identified as of yet, but it appears that they were all in their mid to late teens. The occupants included Mr. Casillas, two additional males, and two females. Two of the other passengers remain in serious condition at the hospital. Initial indications are that speed was a factor in the collision. However, it is not yet known if alcohol or drugs were factors as well.