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Police Blotter: Fatal rollover on I-40 in McKinley County


On Feb. 17, at 8:27 a.m., the New Mexico State Police investigated a fatal rollover crash on Interstate 40 westbound near milepost 28, east of Gallup.

The initial investigation indicated a 2006 Ford Van, driven by Jorge Cruz Villalobos, 34, of Oklahoma, was traveling west on Interstate 40. The Ford lost control on a snow-packed, icy roadway and rolled into the median.

A passenger, Arturo Esparaza, 20, of California, was ejected and transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced deceased. Two other passengers in the Ford sustained unknown injuries and were also transported to a local hospital.

The driver of the Ford, Villalobos, was cited for careless driving.

The weather was a contributing factor in the crash, alcohol was not involved, and seat belts were not properly used. No additional information is available.

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