One killed when wrong-way driver crashes into car on Central Expressway in Dallas

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by MARCUS MOORE and MARJORIE OWENS

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WFAA

Posted on January 27, 2014 at 10:36 AM

Updated Monday, Jan 27 at 6:25 PM

DALLAS — One person was killed early Monday morning when a vehicle headed in the wrong direction on North Central Expressway slammed into a car near the Hall Street exit in Dallas.

The driver of the SUV that was headed southbound in the northbound lanes was transported to a nearby hospital in unknown condition.

Richardson police officers first spotted the car traveling the wrong way at about 3:30 a.m.. The officers, who were in the southbound lanes, traveled along the other side of the highway in an attempt to stop the driver.

Police were unable to intervene before the SUV clipped a car headed northbound near the Park Lane exit. Dallas police said no one was injured in that incident. However, the driver of the SUV continued to head the wrong direction and slammed head-on into another vehicle near the Hall Street exit.

Dallas police said both drivers were taken to nearby hospitals after they were extracted by firefighters from their vehicles.

Police didn't reveal the condition of the wrong-way driver, but said 51-year-old Jose Portillo — the other driver — was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Daniel Pesina said he was headed northbound on Central Expressway when he saw the SUV headed towards him.

"The guy appeared out of nowhere," he said. "I was going to the left, merging into the next lane behind a vehicle, and I had just enough time to veer off into the median."

Police said the wrong-way driver, whose identity wasn't released, faces an intoxication manslaughter charge.

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