Comments Off on Man charged in fatal Chesterfield crash was high on meth

CHESTERFIELD • A California man was high on methamphetamine  when he crashed a SUV head-on into an oncoming car in February, killing a  Chesterfield teenager, authorities say.

Dale Kawamura, 36, of Oakland, Calif., was charged June 13 with first-degree  involuntary manslaughter and second-degree assault in connection with the Feb.  21 crash that killed Clayton Pfeiffer, 18.

Pfeiffer was a graduate of St. John Vianney High School and a freshman at  Missouri Baptist University, where he played baseball.

Kawamura was not in custody Wednesday. Police said authorities will seek to  extradite Kawamura to Missouri to face charges. Bail was set at $75,000.

Police said in court documents that Kawamura was impaired from  methamphetamine in his blood.

Witnesses told police they saw Kawamura drive a 2012 Infiniti sport utility vehicle into the  oncoming lanes of Olive Boulevard near Creve Coeur Mill Road and collide with a  pickup and Pfeiffer’s 1998 Honda Accord. Pfeiffer was pronounced dead at a  hospital.

Kawamura and his passenger were hospitalized for their injuries. Kawamura’s  passenger suffered a broken arm, which is why Kawamura is charged with  second-degree assault, also a felony.

The driver of the pickup was not hurt.

Pfeiffer was a 2011 graduate of Vianney, where he was the lead-off hitter and  second baseman for the school’s baseball team. Pfeiffer was a prospective  red-shirt freshman with the Spartans baseball team at Missouri Baptist  University. He wore No. 4 on his jersey.

Karen Chinnici, Pfeiffer’s grandmother, said Wednesday that she was grateful  for charges against Kawamura but her family is still mourning.

“It’s been a rough year,” she said. “Of course we’re grateful for the  charges, but it’s like we’re living that day all over again.”

On July 28, a charity golf  tournament will be held to raise money for a scholarship fund at  Vianney in Pfeiffer’s name. The tournament will be at the Pevely Farms Golf Club  near Eureka. For information on the tournament, contact Pfeiffer’s father, Dan  Chinnici, at 314-799-5540.

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