DUI suspect hits, kills tow truck driver

SAN DIEGO -- A San Diego man was behind bars Friday on suspicion of drunken driving and fleeing the scene of a crash that killed a tow-truck operator as the victim was assisting the driver of a disabled trash truck alongside state Route 52 in Tierrasanta.

Michael Gilbert Gray, 48, was headed east near Mission Trails Regional Park when the Ford Explorer he was driving veered off the freeway and struck the RoadOne San Diego employee shortly after 5 p.m. Thursday, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The victim, identified by friends and colleagues as Fred Griffith, 55, died at the scene of the accident.

Following the crash, Gray allegedly failed to stop and kept driving until an off-duty law enforcement officer who had witnessed the fatality pulled him over a short distance away.

Gray was booked into San Diego Central Jail on suspicion of drunken driving causing injury or death, fleeing the scene of a crash causing injury or death and vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, CHP spokesman Jake Sanchez said.

The suspect was being held without bail pending arraignment, scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.