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GRASS VALLEY, Calif. April 16, 2017 – At approximately 6:44 PM Saturday evening, 29-year old Grass Valley resident Carlee D’ Arata was driving a 2007 Yamaha Rhino all-terrain vehicle on Old Coach Way near Lower Colfax Rd in the Chicago Park area. She was transporting multiple passengers that had been attending a house party with her in the area.
D’ Arata was driving at a high rate of speed. She lost control of the vehicle and it ultimately overturned, ejecting a rear passenger (31-year old Antonette Thevenin) out of the vehicle who was not wearing her seatbelt. Thevenin landed on the ground and the vehicle then landed on top of her.
Thevenin received grave injuries during the collision. After calling 9-1-1, D’ Arata and the other passengers fled the scene. Witnesses/ bystanders in the area went to the scene and began providing medical care to Thevenin under direction from emergency dispatchers via mobile phone. A CHP officer patrolling SR-174 arrived at the scene a few minutes later, followed closely after by fire department/EMS personnel. Thevenin was transported by Calstar medical helicopter to a regional trauma center in Roseville. However, she succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced deceased later in the evening at the trauma center.
The CHP is handling the ongoing investigation. D’ Arata was located shortly after the collision at her residence in the area. She was determined to be significantly impaired from alcohol at the time of the collision. CHP officers also determined she has a prior DUI conviction. Based on the circumstances of the collision, she was arrested for felony DUI causing great bodily injury, as well as a charge of homicide. She was booked into the Wayne Brown Correctional Facility in Nevada City.
This is an active investigation. Additional charges for D’ Arata and other involved parties may be forthcoming. Anyone with additional information about the collision is encouraged to contact the CHP Grass Valley office at (530) 477-4900.