Fight between driver, passenger results in crash on SR 51 in Phoenix

Posted at 2:10 PM, Jul 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-25 19:24:08-04

Police say a car crash that critically injured a driver and shut down part of a Phoenix freeway was started by a fight between the man and a passenger.

Authorities say the southbound lanes on a section of State Route 51 near the Northern Avenue exit were closed for several hours on Sunday.

They say 23-year-old Luis William Winiker got into an argument with Thomas Booher. That's when Winiker allegedly deliberately crashed the car into a center barrier.

Police say the fight escalated with Winiker beating Booher.

According to a police report, Winiker told officers he had been drinking all night and was trying to hitchhike home when Winiker picked him up.

Winiker told police Booher tried to touch his private parts so he grabbed the steering wheel to cause the car to crash. 

Winiker admitted to hitting Booher with his fists and the car's headlights. 

Officials say Booher was transported to a hospital with life threatening injuries.

Winiker has been booked on three counts of aggravated assault.