Victim in horrific North Freeway wreck ID'd

January 4, 2008 3:41:22 AM PST
We now have a name and a face to go with a fatal collision on the freeway early Monday morning. The victim was a generous taxi driver who would help whoever he could. When he was killed back on December 31, true to form, Clinton Washington was helping someone on the North Freeway. On Wednesday, we spoke with his brother about what kind of person he was.

"Anyone who knows him, knows that's him," said Darren Washington. "That's just the type of character he is."

Just three days after losing his brother, Clinton, in a horrible accident, Darren isn't the least bit surprised that his brother died apparently trying to help somebody.

"Some guys sit around, if he feels they need something to eat, he'll do that. On weekends, he'd barbecue and feed the community," said Darrin.

It happened at around 3:30am. Clinton, a taxi driver for Lone Star Cab, was driving along the North Freeway when police say he came across a flipped vehicle. Concerned for the people inside, he stopped his cab and checked on the occupants.

But while walking around his cab, police say Washington stepped out on the feeder road, at which point he was struck by an SUV driven by Michaela Liem, 37.

Washington had to break the news to his mother.

"When she looked at me and saw tears in my eyes, she knew something was wrong," said Darrin. "But when I mentioned my brother's name, that blew her away because there's no way on God's green earth something like that would happen to him."

Police at the time smelled alcohol on Liem's breath. She has since been charged with intoxication manslaughter. Her attorney tells us he's still waiting for the blood analysis and wonders even if intoxicated, could she have avoided the accident?

They are all questions Darrin has as well as he tries to cope with dealing his older brother.

"Apparently, it was an accident. I understand that," he said. "But then you need to realize you caused a whole lot of hurt and grief. So I guess we'll have to deal with that when it comes."

Family members say funeral arrangements are still pending. As for Liem, we're told she's since bonded out of jail.