Driver arrested after Pacific Coast Highway crash in Malibu kills 4 Pepperdine University students

MALIBU, Calif. (AP) — A 22-year-old driver was arrested on suspicion of manslaughter after a crash in Malibu killed four college students and injured two other people, officials said Wednesday.

The six pedestrians were struck around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday along Pacific Coast Highway about 4 miles (6.4 km) east of Pepperdine University, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Four women were pronounced dead at the scene and two others were taken to a hospital but there was no word Wednesday on their conditions.

Pepperdine initially said on X, formerly Twitter, that officials believed those killed attended the university’s Seaver College of Liberal Arts. Pepperdine’s president, Jim Gash, later confirmed that the four killed were students.

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“Earlier today, we learned that four precious lives who brought joy and light to our campus were taken from us suddenly, tragically, and incomprehensibly,” Gash wrote in a message to the university community.

The school later identified the victims as Niamh Rolston, Peyton Stewart, Asha Weir and Deslyn Williams, all seniors.

The male driver was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, said sheriff’s Sgt. Maria Navarro.

Investigators believe he was driving a dark colored BMW westbound at a high rate of speed when he lost control, sideswiped at least three parked vehicles, which then crashed into a group of people walking in the area about 25 miles (40 km) west of downtown Los Angeles.

“As we await further details from the investigation, we pray for our entire community,” the university said on X.

A campus prayer service for the victims was scheduled for Thursday morning.