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Woman killed, husband injured in Clear Lake pier crash

A 77-year-old Crescent City woman was killed and her husband severely injured Thursday when their car ran off Highway 20 on the north shore of Clear Lake, struck a pier and overturned, the CHP said.

Joyce Rakestraw died at the scene of the 12:37 p.m. crash, the CHP said.

Her husband, Raymond Rakestraw Jr., 80, was airlifted to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital with major injuries, authorities said. He was listed in fair condition Friday night, according to a hospital spokeswoman.

Officers at the scene found evidence that Raymond Rakestraw, who was driving the couple's 2005 Buick Park Avenue, may have been under the influence of prescription medication at the time of the incident, the CHP said.

He was arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence and released for treatment of his injuries, the CHP said.

The Rakestraws were eastbound on Highway 20 at 45-to-50 mph on a nearly straight stretch of road near Glenhaven when the vehicle left the road and headed toward the water, law enforcement and fire personnel said.

The car was about 15 feet from the water when it struck the end of a pier head-on, causing the vehicle to up-end and land overturned on the pier, they said.

Both the driver and his passenger had their seatbelts fastened and had airbags that deployed, but the woman did not survive the crash, the CHP said.


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