Thomas O’Connell Killed; Driver Arrested DUI in Fatal Concord Crash

 Damian Lopez-Avelino Charged in Fatal Crash on Oak Grove Road in Concord

Marilyn O’Connell Injured in Concord Collision

CONCORD, Calif. (Nov. 30, 2023) — Thomas O’Connell, 86, of Concord, died and his wife of 60 years, Marilyn, 82, was injured in a crash with an alleged DUI driver on Oak Grove Road in Concord.

The deadly Thanksgiving night crash is one of two involving the suspect that occurred on Nov. 23rd, according to East Bay Times.

Police arrested the alleged DUI driver identified as Damian Lopez-Avelino, 19, of Concord. He is charged with several felonies including vehicular manslaughter, DUI causing serious bodily injury, hit-and-run with injury and leaving the scene of an accident, the report said. Police also charged the Concord teen with a misdemeanor for driving a vehicle without a valid driver’s license.

Authorities filed formal charges on Tuesday and the suspect is being held without bail at the Martinez Detention Center.

Thanksgiving Day Crash on Oak Grove Road

Police investigating the crash determined that Damian Lopez-Avelino was driving a Ford Fusion north on Oak Grove Road when he allegedly sideswiped a vehicle near Treat Boulevard. However, the suspect failed to stop and continued driving on the wrong side of the road with his lights turned off.

He eventually crashed head-on with a Toyota Camry near Ryan Road. Marilyn O’Connell, 82, was driving the Toyota and her husband Thomas O’Connell in the passenger seat. The couple had just shared a Thanksgiving meal with their family members.

Paramedics responded and rushed both people to a hospital where he later died from his injuries. She was treated for broken bones and later released.

Meanwhile, bystanders reportedly held the suspect until Concord police arrived on scene.

The case remains under investigation.


Johnson Attorneys Group hopes this news information is timely and helpful, but our law firm does not represent any of the parties mentioned above . Additionally, if you would like to contribute any information, add a GoFundMe page or have legal questions, please call 1-(855) 703-4186 as soon as possible. Our personal injury law firm is a proud, longtime supporter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

Source: East Bay Times, Fox 2 KTVU News




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