Tuesday, July 6, 2010

More info on last week's high speed chase

For those following the news about the high speed chase on Base Line Road, here's a bit of background information.

Last Tuesday morning, a Claremont police officer attempted to pull over a silver BMW on Base Line Road near Padua Avenue for not having a license plate. The officer was not aware at the time that the car had been stolen. Rather than pulling over, the driver sped off, heading eastbound on Base Line.

At Benson Avenue in Upland, the driver ran a red light and crashed into 2 vehicles, killing one man and injuring another. One witness said the car was moving about 55 miles per hour at the time of the collision.

The man who died as a result of the crash had strong ties to Claremont and people in the city. William Blanchard, 76, grew up in the famous Gumby house in Claremont, attended Webb School and graduated from Pomona College. His father was a music professor at Pomona for many years.

The driver is Brett Fagan, 25, of Covina. He is being held at West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga.

According to Kenneth Ford, Chief Deputy Regional for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Fagan was released from prison on June 2 after serving most of his 2-year sentence for a previous auto theft. He was not a part of California's controversial early release program.

He was on parole and in violation of his parole at the time of the accident, police said. Fagan faces charges that include murder, auto theft and felony evasion of police.

A memorial service will be held this Saturday for Blanchard beginning at 11:15 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Upland. The church is located at 262 N. Euclid Ave.

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