[05-14-2024] Coroner Identifies Three Victims in Fatal La Quinta Crash

LA QUINTA, CA — Three individuals lost their lives, and another suffered significant injuries in a tragic traffic accident in La Quinta. The investigation into the crash is ongoing as of Wednesday.

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department reported that deputies responded to the intersection of Highway 111 and Simon Drive at approximately 9:20 p.m. on Tuesday.

Upon arrival, deputies found two motorcycles and a white Chevrolet pickup truck on Highway 111, west of Simon Drive. The collision resulted in significant injuries to four people. Despite the life-saving efforts of CalFire and AMR, three individuals were pronounced dead at the scene, while one was transported to a local hospital with severe injuries.

The Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner’s Bureau identified the deceased as Brandt Celli, a 26-year-old man from Indio; Maria Reyes, 33, from La Quinta; and Katherine Vogts, 47, from Palm Desert.

Preliminary investigations indicate that the motorcycles were traveling eastbound on Highway 111 when one motorcycle struck a pedestrian crossing the highway. The impact caused the rider to be ejected, with the motorcycle landing in the westbound lanes. As bystanders attempted to assist the injured rider, a westbound Chevrolet pickup truck collided with the motorcycle, resulting in fatal injuries to the motorcycle rider, the pedestrian, and one of the good Samaritans who stopped to help.

The driver of the pickup truck remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators. Authorities do not believe alcohol or drugs were factors in the collision.

Anyone with information regarding the crash is urged to contact Deputy K. Moore of the Thermal sheriff’s station’s La Quinta Traffic Team at 760-863-8990, or anonymously at 760-341-STOP, referencing incident #LA241350082.

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