A driver was killed early Friday when his car crashed into a downtown Santa Rosa building, authorities said.
The 2015 Toyota Tacoma crashed into the north wall of the Savory Spice Shop near Fifth and Humboldt streets about 2:15 a.m., according to police.
Marco Antonio Rodriguez Meza, 25, of Ukiah, was killed in the collision. Officers have not determined if drugs or alcohol use contributed to the crash, said Sgt. Jonathan Wolf.
Santa Rose Police Officer Jeff Woods had spotted the driver speeding on College Avenue east of Mendocino Avenue a few minutes before the crash, Wolf said.
The driver made a right turn going southbound onto Humboldt Street going more than 45 mph even though the speed limit is 25 mph, he said.
Woods attempted to follow the driver, Wolf said. The officer went southbound on Brookwood Avenue to try to meet up with the Tacoma on Fifth Street. But by the time he arrived near the scene, Meza had already crashed into the wall. No police lights or siren were used.
“He was never behind him pursuing him,” Wolf said of the officer. “He was more searching for him.”
Meza, who was not wearing a seat belt, was pronounced dead at the scene at 2:24 a.m., he said. There were no other passengers in the vehicle.
The crash caused very little damage to the building, resulting in only a few chipped bricks.