SAN DIEGO (AP) — Two San Diego police officers were among three people killed Friday after their car was struck by a driver going the wrong way on an interstate highway, authorities said.
The officers were in a blue city-owned Ford Fusion sedan when they were hit by a white Honda Civic going at a high rate of speed in the wrong way down Interstate 5 near the U.S.-Mexico border south of downtown San Diego, California Highway Patrol Officer Jim Bettencourt told the San Diego Union-Tribune.
The female driver of the Civic was also killed after her car slammed into the officers’ sedan and burst into flames.
The officers were identified as a married couple, Detective Ryan Park, 32, and his wife, Detective Jamie Huntley-Park, 33.
Park was a homicide detective, and Huntley-Park was assigned to the Southern Division. They had the day off, but Ryan was on call, Police Chief David Nisleit said at a news conference Friday evening.
The two met at the police academy, married in 2016 and were both promoted to detective on the same day nearly three years ago, the chief said.
“Both were beloved, dedicated, and decorated public servants,” he said in a statement.
Police were still investigating what happened and whether drugs or alcohol were a factor.
A few hours after the crash, a procession of more than a dozen motorcycle officers led a coroner’s van away from the site.