SUV crashes into La Mesa building, kills man inside – The San Diego Union-Tribune


The driver of an SUV crashed Wednesday evening into a building in La Mesa, killing a 40-year-old man who was inside, police said.

It happened about 5:30 p.m. at 7373 University Ave., in front of Helix High School, where the eastbound SUV swerved off the road and struck the mostly glass commercial office building, La Mesa police Lt. Katy Lynch said.

A La Mesa police officer who happened to be a few vehicle behind the SUV reported the crash, and officers soon discovered the vehicle struck the victim who was inside the building, fatally injuring him, Lynch said.

Medics took the SUV’s driver, a 61-year-old man, to a hospital for treatment of injuries that were not expected to be life-threatening, Lynch said. The exact extent of his injuries was not known.

The victim’s name was not immediately released. The lieutenant said he was inside one of the businesses with offices in the building, but it was not immediately clear if he was an employee of that business.

The Police Department’s traffic unit was investigating what caused the crash and attempting to determine if drugs or alcohol were factors in the deadly incident. A city building inspector was called to the scene to determine the structural integrity of the building, and San Diego Gas & Electric also sent personnel.

Police shut down the east lanes of University Avenue at Yale Street shortly after the crash and asked drivers to avoid the area. Those lanes were reopened to traffic about 8:15 p.m., according to the Police Department.