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Nipomo man arrested for murder in connection to fatal Avila Beach crash, CHP says

A CHP investigation found the driver who caused the crash was under the influence of drugs at the time
avila crash.jpg
Posted at 5:20 PM, Aug 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-08 01:42:41-04

A Nipomo man was arrested for murder in connection to a head-on traffic collision in Avila Beach Friday afternoon.

The California Highway Patrol responded to the crash on San Luis Bay Dr. at Apple Orchard Lane around 3 p.m.

According to a CHP report, 31-year-old Patrick McDuffee of Nipomo was driving a Ford F-250 truck southbound on San Luis Bay Dr. approaching Avila Beach Dr. when witnesses reported seeing him crossing into ongoing traffic.

Officers said the front end of McDuffee's truck collided with a Mercedes van going northbound on San Luis Bay Dr. just north of Avila Beach Dr.

The driver of the Mercedes van, a 72-year-old man from Atascadero, was pronounced dead on the scene. His name has not yet been released.

His wife, who was not identified, suffered major injuries and was transported to Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center, according to authorities.

The CHP said an investigation found that McDuffee was driving while under the influence of drugs. He was arrested and booked into the San Luis Obispo County Jail for murder.