Driver of SUV involved in fatal crash on I-10 identified as 19-year-old from Phoenix

Apr 22, 2022, 12:23 PM

Kevin Avila (Pinal County Sheriff's Office Photo)...

Kevin Avila (Pinal County Sheriff's Office Photo)

(Pinal County Sheriff's Office Photo)

PHOENIX – Arizona authorities on Friday identified the driver of an SUV involved in a fatal collision on Interstate 10 during a police chase as a 19-year-old from Phoenix.

Kevin Avila was booked into Pinal County Jail for first-degree homicide, endangerment and aggravated assault, the Arizona Department of Public Safety told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

Homeland Security Investigations is leading one part of the inquiry into “the attempted human smuggling activity,” the federal agency, which is part of Immigration Control and Enforcement, said in a statement Thursday.

Three of the eight passengers inside a small SUV were killed in the head-on collision near Picacho Peak around 9 a.m., DPS said. Two died at the scene and another died at a hospital.

The SUV had taken off after failing to yield to a state trooper who had tried to pull it over near in westbound lanes near Eloy.

The vehicle crossed the dirt median and went into eastbound traffic, then collided with a tractor-trailer.

Five of the passengers were air-lifted to hospitals in Phoenix and Tucson, DPS said.

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Driver of SUV involved in fatal crash on I-10 identified as 19-year-old from Phoenix