H-SAN LUIS OBISPO

Mar 27, 2012 7:45 PM by Ariel Wesler

Mother of victim involved in building crash speaks to KSBY News

San Luis Obispo Police have released the names of the two men who are in the hospital after their car slammed into a building on Higuera Street last night.

Investigators say Michael Jones, 22, of San Luis Obispo was driving the car and is in serious condition. His passenger, Chris Green, 20, of San Luis Obispo is still in critical condition.

Authorities say they were turning left on Higuera Street from Madonna Road around 8:15 Monday night when their car slammed into the San Luis Symphony office.
Emergency crews had to use the jaws of life to pull both men out of the car. Nobody inside the building was injured.

Both victims are still at Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center and we were able to confirm they are not Cal Poly students.

Chris Green, 20, was in the passenger seat of a white sedan when it crashed into the Pacific Coast Center building Monday night. His friend, Michael Jones, was behind the wheel.

"It sounded like the loudest sound I ever heard. It was horrible, and I thought the ceiling had fallen in or something like that," said Barbara-Joe Osborne, who was inside the building at the time.

The crash ripped off a six foot section of wall. Osborne was a little shaken up but uninjured. Witnesses driving behind the car said it was traveling too fast when it slammed into the building while making a left on Higuera Street.

"There was no screeching, nothing. It just hit and there weren't any sounds after either," Osborne said.

It took more than a dozer firefighters more than half an hour to get both men out of the car.

"That was the problem getting the second patient out. Both their legs were trapped underneath the dashboard, which had crashed on top of the feet," said San Luis Obispo City Fire Battalion Chief Neal Berryman.

Green's mother, Rose Smissaert, spoke with KSBY News over the phone from Texas. She said her son underwent surgery Tuesday afternoon.

"He's very easy to talk to. He's very easy to relate to. He's always there for everybody," Smissaert said.

She says she's doing all she can to be there for him.

"I am currently trying as hard as I can to go to California to be at my son's side," Smissaert said. "I would like to be there when he wakes up."

Green had just moved here in August to puruse a career in culinary arts. Investigators have not released the cause of the crash, but it's pretty clear speed was a factor. They say alcohol was not.

Anyone with additional information on the crash is asked to contact the San Luis Obispo Police Department.

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