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Solo-Vehicle Fatality Traffic Collision in Novato after Driver Flees from California Highway Patrol - Identity Released

The decedent, a rear seat passenger in the vehicle has been positively identified as:  

Agustin ROJAS-RODRIGUEZ, an 18-year-old male  from Santa Rosa, CA.

On Wednesday, July 28th, at approximately 1:45 AM, a California Highway Patrol (CHP) unit was stopped at the northbound 101 truck scales in Terra Linda when they observed a vehicle pass their location at a high rate of speed.  The officers immediately entered US-101 and caught up to the vehicle, identified as a Toyota Avalon, as it approached the Lucas Valley Road off ramp.  The officers activated their emergency lights and initiated an enforcement stop of the vehicle for the speeding violation.  The vehicle yielded to the officers and came to a stop on the Lucas Valley-Smith Ranch Road off ramp.  Shortly after stopping, the right front and right rear passengers in the Toyota exited the vehicle and ran from the scene.  The two CHP officers immediately exited their vehicle and began to give chase when they observed the Toyota quickly accelerate away from the scene.  The officers ran back to their patrol vehicle and attempted to catch up to the fleeing Toyota.  Despite reentering 101 soon after the Toyota fled, officers could no longer see where the vehicle had gone.  As the officers were passing the Bel Marin Keys off-ramp, they noticed a plume of dirt and dust at the end of the off-ramp which they suspected might be the vehicle.  The officers returned to the off-ramp and located the Toyota with major collision damage after striking a stop light utility pole.

Officers on the scene quickly determined the driver had fled the scene on foot toward the Safeway shopping center to the south.  A Marin County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) Deputy located a passenger in the left rear seat of the crashed vehicle, who was unconscious and unresponsive.  The MCSO Deputy immediately began providing life-saving resuscitative aid to the passenger, who had sustained major injuries during the collision.  Despite these efforts, the subject failed to respond to treatment and was   pronounced deceased on the scene by paramedics, who arrived shortly after the collision.

The decedent, a rear seat passenger in the vehicle has been positively identified as:  

Agustin ROJAS-RODRIGUEZ, an 18-year-old male  from Santa Rosa, CA.

A forensic post mortem examination with toxicology testing is being completed today.  The cause and manner of death will be pending the conclusion of the investigations being completed by the California Highway Patrol - Marin Office and the Marin County Sheriff’s Office - Coroner Division.  No further information will be released by the Coroner Division at this time, as this is an active and ongoing investigation.  Any further questions regarding the incident should be directed to the California Highway Patrol - Marin Office.

The Marin County Sheriff’s Office and personnel of the Coroner Division offers our sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Rojas-Rodriguez.


Roger G. Fielding

Chief Deputy Coroner