Friday, January 11, 2019
On Friday, January 11, 2019 at approximately 3:07 p.m., Steele Creek Division officers responded to the 900 block of Archdale Drive in reference to a one motor vehicle crash call for service. Upon arrival, officers located an unresponsive male outside of a white 2007 Scion TC passenger car and the driver of the Scion in the driver's seat with injury. Medic arrived on the crash scene and transported the driver, Jose Mario Mejia Gutierrez, to Atrium Health Center and pronounced the passenger, Faustino Israel Ponce Romero, deceased on scene. There were no other passengers.
The preliminary investigation indicates that the Scion was traveling west on Archdale Drive within the 900 block and ran off the roadway to the left after losing control while exiting a curve. After leaving the roadway the Scion struck a tree with the front passenger door. The vehicle then separated in half with the rear half coming to a final resting position near the tree. The front half of the Scion continued traveling through a field rotating clockwise and during this process the victim, Ponce Romero, was ejected. Both Ponce Romero and the front half of the Scion came to a final resting position approximately 150 feet west from the tree it struck.
After being released from Atrium Health Center, Jose Mario Mejia Gutierrez was transported to CMPD Headquarters voluntarily where he was interviewed by detectives with the Major Crash Investigations Unit. Upon completion of the interview, Mejia Gutierrez was arrested and charged with Involuntary Manslaughter, Reckless Driving, No Operators License, Failure to Maintain Insurance on the Scion, and Failing to Register the Scion. Speed is a factor in this crash, however; alcohol use is not a contributing factor. Detectives with the Major Crash Unit, DWI Task Force, and CMPD Crime Scene investigators responded to the crash scene. The victim's family has been notified of his death.
The crash remains under investigation. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Detective Crum with the Major Crash Investigations Unit at 704-432-2169 Ext4.
Event # 2019-0111-1507-04
Location: 900 Archdale Drive
Division: Steele Creek Division
Crash Type: One Motor Vehicle
Name- Jose Mario Mejia Gutierrez, H/M, 01/18/1997 (Minor Injury)
White 2007 Scion TC (2door passenger car)
Name- Faustino Israel Ponce Romero, H/M, 12/29/1999 (Deceased)