Youth Correctional Officer Arrested in Connection to Deadly Elk Grove Crash

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ELK GROVE -- Elk Grove police arrested 39-year-old Rajnel Nath, a youth correctional officer, in connection to a deadly crash that occurred July 8.

Officers say he was drunk behind the wheel when he crashed into a car on Laguna Boulevard and Laguna Oaks Drive, setting off a chain reaction crash, that injured three people and killed another.

"The suspect was driving an SUV down Laguna Boulevard at a high rate of speed, approaching stopped traffic, at the high point he rear-ended a Toyota Prius ... the driver was deceased at the scene," Elk Grove police spokesman Officer Chris Trim said.

On Tuesday, Nath turned himself in to police.

"Facing charges of vehicular manslaughter, hit-and-run and driving under the influence causing injury or death," Trim said.

Several witnesses told police that before the crash, Nath was in the area of Chicago Fire Pizza along Laguna Boulevard, not far from where the crash occurred.

"And at some point after he left there, he was involved in a hit-and-run collision there in the parking lot," Trim said.

Nath was taken to a hospital for minor injuries following the crash.

Since then, police investigators have pieced together the case that led to his arrest.

Nath is on paid administrative leave. He's been a correctional officer for 16 years, and has worked at the N.A. Chaderjian Youth Correctional Facility in Stockton for nine years.

FOX40 spoke to a longtime friend and coworker from the juvenile facility where Nath works.

They're all saddened because they described him as a "super nice guy," and that the circumstances could've happened to anyone.

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