Former Merced County Commissioner Ralph Cook Killed in DUI Crash
A former Merced County Commissioner died on the morning of June 8 in a crash involving a drunk driver. According to the California Highway Patrol (CHP), Cook’s girlfriend was driving at the time of the incident.
Southbound Highway 99 was shut down after Cook’s girlfriend lost control of a 2015 Mercedes and crashed.
Cook was pronounced dead at the scene.
The owner of Kewl Kat’s Bar in Merced claims Cook met 38-year-old Jacqulin Calixtro at his establishment around midnight. Later, the two argued in the parking lot. This is the point where a man approached Cook and physically assaulted him.
At the time of this report, police are analyzing surveillance video to identify any suspects.
Cook was transported to a Modesto hospital and later discharged.
The CHP confirms that the couple were traveling from Stanislaus County at the time of the incident.
Officers said that Calixtro appeared intoxicated at the scene.
Cook’s peers and loved ones said that he was a good and passionate man both inside and outside of the courts.
Calixtro was arrested for felony DUI and gross vehicular manslaughter.