A California man was killed Tuesday night when a boulder from a highway overpass smashed through the windshield of a car in which he was a passenger — and authorities believe the boulder was intentionally thrown.
Christopher Lopez was killed by the 35-pound boulder as he sat in the passenger seat of his family’s Toyota Corolla while his wife, Guadalupe Gutierrez, drove him, her mother and their 4-year-old daughter home Tuesday night.
At a press conference on Thursday, the California Highway Patrol announced that they are investigating the incident.
“This was an intentional act,” CHP Lt. Chuck Geletko said. “Any prudent person would know that a boulder that size would seriously harm someone driving on the freeway below.”
Lopez and his family were on their way home, heading west on the 134 Freeway in Pasadena when the boulder fell shortly before 9 p.m. Gutierrez had been driving in the carpool lane and was about to pass under Orange Grove Boulevard when the boulder went through the windshield and hit Lopez.
Gutierrez immediately drove her family to a local hospital, where Lopez later died from his injuries.
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“Out of nowhere. Now, he’s gone,” Gutierrez said through tears at the press conference, “He didn’t deserve this.”
According to the Pasadena Star-News, the couple was expecting their second child.
CHP has confirmed that the boulder came from the overpass, but how it came down is still under investigation.
Security camera footage from the area that may have caught the incident are being reviewed, a CHP official said.
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Investigators are also canvassing a local homeless camp nearby the overpass.
“If somebody saw something, please help us,” Francisco Lopez, Christopher’s father, said. “This shouldn’t have happened this way.”
Anyone with information to the incident is urged to call California Highway Patrol at 626-296-8100 or 323-259-3200 during non-business hours.