Breaking News Blog

Monday, Oct 29 2012 11:15 PM

Teen killed in crash with suspected drunken driver

  1. 1 of 6

    By Shelby Mack / The Californian

    A photo of Breana Webb that was put on display during a candlelight vigil at the Park at River Walk soon after she was killed.

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  2. 2 of 6

    By Shelby Mack / The Californian

    Cristin Carrizosa, Mallerie Fuson and Megan Spiersch gathered with others at a candlelight vigil in honor of Breana Webb at the Park at River Walk on Monday night. The girls were schoolmates with Breana, who was killed in a car accident early Monday morning.

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  3. 3 of 6

    By Shelby Mack / The Californian

    Friends and Family of Breana Webb listen to a song in her memory at a candlelight vigil in her honor at the Park at River Walk on Oct. 29, 2012.

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  4. 4 of 6

    By Shelby Mack / The Californian

    A photo of Breana Webb was put on display during a candlelight vigil at the Park at River Walk on Oct. 29, 2012.

    click to expand click to collapse
  5. 5 of 6

    By Shelby Mack / The Californian

    Friends and family of Breana Webb gather at the Park at River Walk on Monday night for a candlelight vigil in honor of Webb who was killed in a car accident early Monday morning.

    click to expand click to collapse
  6. 6 of 6

    By Shelby Mack / The Californian

    Friends and family of Breana Webb hold hands during a candlelight vigil at the Park at River Walk on Monday in honor of Webb who was killed in a car accident early Monday morning.

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BY JASON KOTOWSKI californian staff writer jkotowski@bakersfield.com

Breana Webb loved dancing and spoke her mind. She enjoyed snacking on Taco Bell and macaroni and cheese, helping even her most shy friends come out of their shells, and cracking others up with her strange but great sense of humor.

She was 18 years old and she died in a crash early Monday morning after police said her car was hit by a drunken driver just north of Stockdale Highway on Coffee Road.

Jason Guthrie was one of the four passengers in Webb's car, and one of about 200 who attended at a candlelight vigil held in her memory Monday evening. Guthrie was sore and needed assistance from his father and friends to walk around, but he was determined to be at the vigil at The Park at Riverwalk and speak against the dangers of drinking and driving.

"You're risking more than your future when you drink and drive," Guthrie said, adding that people who drink and drive never think anything bad can happen to them.

He became emotional as he described Webb as a fun-loving, good person.

Posts on social media websites suggest Webb may have been drinking herself before getting behind the wheel. The last message she wrote on Twitter at about 1 a.m. Monday was "Dude. Me & Jessica rule at drinking games."

Daniel Galvez, who was apparently with her Sunday evening, wrote "THE LAST (expletive deleted) WORDS I SAID TO HER WAS 'DRIVE SAFE, BYE.'"

And Rich Guthrie, Jason's father, said after the vigil he'd also heard that Webb was drinking.

Rich Guthrie said his son has prayed for everyone since the 3:47 a.m. crash, including the allegedly drunken driver of the other vehicle, 33-year-old Martin Juarez. He said he thanks God his son is alive, but he also feels for Webb's family.

Some people at the vigil expressed a sense of togetherness, and that at least they have each other and they can together cherish Webb's memory. Some said she's in a better place now, and one person asked that everyone hold hands and close their eyes and think of the best memories they had with her.

"She was an amazing little girl," Mallerie Fuson, who attended Frontier High School with Webb, said afterward.

Another friend, Cristin Carrizosa, called Webb "irreplaceable," and said she loved to cause a scene.

Megan Spiersch was in a physics class with Webb, and remembered how they would eat instant cups of noodles together.

Webb died at the scene of the crash, and her four passengers suffered minor to moderate injuries when they were hit by Juarez, who police say was driving the wrong way on Coffee Road. Webb was driving a 2007 Toyota Corolla north of Stockdale Highway when Juarez, driving a 2008 Scion XB south in the northbound lanes of Coffee Road, struck her, police said.

Juarez had pleaded guilty to a DUI in 2005, and on Monday he was booked on suspicion of murder, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, DUI causing bodily injury and causing injury or death by driving the wrong way on a divided highway, according to Kern County Superior Court and Sheriff's Department records. His arraignment is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.

Webb graduated from Frontier in July, principal Dan P. Shannon said. Grief counseling is being provided to students who knew her.

"It's an unfortunate incident and our thoughts and prayers are with the families of all the individuals involved," Shannon said.

Many others took to Twitter to express their sadness.

"Ten years of friendship," wrote Cassie Hines. "That can never be replaced."

Cobi Henriquez wrote, "You will be missed and loved by many and you will forever stay in our hearts. Rest in paradise."

Anyone with information about the crash is asked to call the police department at 327-7111.

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