Taxi Passenger Killed in Crash

November 18, 2007

Los Angeles: One person was killed and at least seven others were injured early Sunday morning when a taxi filled with passengers was involved in a collision with three other cars.

On November 18, 2007, at approximately 2:15 a.m., a 2000 Ford, Crown Victoria, Checker Taxicab travelling southbound on Crescent Heights Boulevard at Melrose Avenue was hit broadside by a 2008 Toyota Scion. Willie Faulkner, 28, of Los Angeles was driving the Scion, westbound on Melrose Avenue, at a high rate of speed and failed to stop for the red phase traffic light at the intersection of Melrose Avenue and Crescent Heights Boulevard. Faulkner entered the intersection and collided with the driver side of the taxi, causing both cars to careen into the eastbound lanes, crashing into two eastbound cars, a 2009 Ford Escape and a 2002 Subaru Impreza.

The taxi was carrying five passengers, all seriously injured in the crash. They were each transported to local hospitals where one of the passengers, Sarah Gilfillan, 26, of Pasadena, was pronounced dead shortly after arriving there. The four others were admitted with injuries ranging from moderate to critical. The cab driver was also transported to the hospital where he was treated for injuries, but later released.

Two passengers in Faulkner’s car received minor injuries and were treated and released from one of the hospitals where the injured were transported. The occupants of the two vehicles hit after the initial impact were not injured.

Faulkner was subsequently arrested and booked for Felony Vehicular Manslaughter with Gross Negligence and is being held on $170,000 bail.

Anyone with information is asked to call West Traffic Division Detectives Nelson Hernandez or Michael Fischer at 213-473-0234. After hours and on weekends, please call the 24-hour Detective Information Desk at 1-877-LAW-FULL (529-3855).