Palm Desert man, 55, ID’d after deadly San Jacinto crash

SAN JACINTO, Calif., — Authorities say a man was killed in a two-vehicle, head-on collision in San Jacinto yesterday morning, Thursday, Sept. 9. The fatal accident happened on Sanderson Avenue, about one-half-mile north of Ramona Expressway, according to officials.


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Deputies from the San Jacinto Sheriff’s Station, along with Cal Fire-Riverside and other emergency personnel were dispatched to the scene around 6 a.m. after receiving reports of a major injury traffic collision.

When officials arrived they found a collision involving two vehicles, described as a dark blue compact SUV and light-colored full-size SUV. Both vehicles sustained major front-end damage, with the smaller SUV ending up on a concrete railing that overlooks the Soboba river bed below.

Firefighters work at the scene of an accident that killed 55-year-old, Palm Desert resident, Dennis Hoppe yesterday morning. Robert Carter/Public Safety Incidents photo

Despite life-saving measures, one of the drivers succumbed to their injuries and passed away at the scene.

Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner officials have since identified Dennis Hoppe, 55, of Palm Desert, as the man killed in the accident. A coroner’s release indicated he was pronounced deceased at 6:06 a.m.

Members of the San Jacinto Sheriff’s Traffic Team responded to the scene to investigate the cause of the deadly collision. They were assisted at the scene by Coroner and Sheriff’s Forensic Services officials.

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The crash forced the hours-long closure of Sanderson Avenue/Hwy 79, while officials worked at the scene. At times, one-way traffic control used to ease congestion along the heavily traveled corridor, also known locally as Lamb Canyon, which is the main, northbound connector between the San Jacinto valley and 10 Freeway.

The sheriff’s investigation is continuing and no further details have been released.

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Robert Carter/Public Safety Incidents photos above, video below.

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Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County-based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.