Update – Fatal Traffic Collision


Reporting Deputy: Sergeant Don Olson

File # T223630155


On March 3, 2023, after a month’s long investigation, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office – Palm Desert Traffic Team, obtained an arrest warrant for Ricardo Meza, 24 years, of Palm Desert. The investigation revealed Meza was traveling at over 100 mph on Fred Waring Dr. just seconds before the collision on December 28, 2023. Meza has a prior arrest and conviction for a speed contest on Fred Waring Dr. approximately two miles away from the location of this fatal collision. Meza was located in the 67000 block of Dillon Rd., in South Desert Hot Springs. Deputies from the Palm Desert Traffic Team, Palm Desert Investigations Bureau, Palm Desert Burglary Suppression Unit, and the Fugitive Warrant Enforcement Team took Meza into custody without incident. Meza was booked into the John Benoit Detention Center in Indio on three counts of homicide.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to call Deputy Derek Thomas at the Palm Desert Sheriff Station, 760-836-1600.

Persons who wish to report criminal activity and wish to remain anonymous can call crime stoppers at 800-78-CRIME (800-782-7463) or 800-47-DRUGS (800-473-7847). You can also leave anonymous information on our Crime Tips Online Form or WeTip.

For media inquiries regarding this incident please contact the Media Information Bureau.


On December 28, 2022, about 7:13pm, deputies from the Palm Desert Sheriff’s Station witnessed a 2021 Honda Accord traveling at a high rate of speed traveling westbound Fred Waring Dr. at the intersection of Monterey Ave. Deputies attempted to locate the vehicle to conduct an enforcement stop when they observed the vehicle was involved in a collision at the intersection of Fred Waring Dr. and Adonis Dr. The driver and sole occupant of the Honda, Ricardo Meza, 24-years of Palm Desert, was transported to an area hospital and is being treated for non-life-threatening injuries. The driver and two occupants of the other vehicle were pronounced deceased at the scene. It is currently under investigation whether or not drugs and/or alcohol played a factor in this collision.

The Palm Desert Sheriff’s Station Traffic Team responded to the location of the collision and assumed the investigation. The investigation revealed the Honda was traveling westbound on Fred Waring Dr. at a high rate of speed when it collided with a 2015 Nissan Sentra that was attempting to make a left turn.

The traffic collision investigation required the temporary closure of westbound and eastbound Fred Waring Dr. between Town Center Way and Monterey Ave.

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