Indio police are seeking the public’s help in locating a driver who fatally struck a pedestrian, one day after vehicular manslaughter charges were dropped against a Palm Springs man arrested and charged in the crash.
Charges were dismissed Thursday against Colin Havens, 30, of Palm Springs, who was accused in the June 16 crash that killed 65-year-old Indio resident Elena Ramirez.
Police initially arrested Havens in connection with the crash, which occurred just before 9:30 p.m. at Valencia Avenue and Monroe Street, according to Indio Police Sgt. Dan Marshall. Ramriez was pronounced dead at the scene.
Now police say that they believe the suspect was driving “a blue Chevrolet Cobalt or Saturn-type vehicle with a fin on the trunk.”
The vehicle may have some minimal damage to the front right portion of the car.
Havens was found in his car near Highway 111 and Golf Center Parkway and was arrested after police found him to be under the influence of alcohol, Marshall said.
He was charged with DUI gross vehicular manslaughter, felony hit and run and drunk driving, but Riverside County District Attorney’s spokesman John Hall said Thursday that “after further investigation, it was determined that Mr. Havens was not the person believed to have committed the crime.”
Hall did say that Havens has been charged in a separate misdemeanor drunk driving case, which also occurred on June 16 in Indio. In that case, he faces two misdemeanor drunk driving counts and a single misdemeanor count of hit and run, causing property damage, but further details on that case were not available.
Havens has since been released from custody, while the investigation into Ramirez’s death continues.
Anyone with information regarding the crash was asked to contact the Indio Police Department at (760) 391-4051 or Coachella Valley Crime Stoppers at (760) 341-7867 to remain anonymous.