An Alameda County sheriff's deputy driving in unincorporated Hayward early Friday morning struck two people, killing a man and injuring a woman, who "appeared to be intoxicated," a sheriff's spokesman said.
Sgt. J.D. Nelson told NBC Bay Area that the man died at the scene near Mission Boulevard and Cherry Way after the deputy's car struck him about 4:30 a.m.
The woman he was with was taken to the hospital with head injuries. Nelson added that the woman "appeared to be pretty intoxicated."
Nelson did not name the deputy but said he had worked nine years for the department. Nelson added that he believed the deputy simply "didn't see" the couple walking.
The California Highway Patrol is investigating the death. Lt. Christopher Sherry said that there is a crosswalk at the scene, and investigators were trying to determine if the couple was walking inside the lines. Sherry said that the woman was found to have narcotics and she will likely be arrested when she is released from the hospital.
On Friday morning, investigators had cordoned off the area and it was clear that the deputy's car was damaged. The patrol vehicle had struck a white parked car after the deputy struck the pedestrians in an attempt to correct himself, Nelson said.
This is not the first time a sheriff in the Bay Area has been involved in what appears to be an accidental death.
On March 9, 2008, Santa Clara County Sheriff's deputy James "Tommy" Council was driving on Stevens Canyon Road in Cupertino, striking three cyclists, killing two - Matt Peterson, 29, of San Francisco and Kristy Gough, 30, of San Leandro.
In 2009, he pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of vehicular manslaughter. He had maintained that his cruiser crossed the center line of the road when he had fallen asleep at the wheel. He had been 4 /12 hours into a 12-hour shift after working a 12 1/2 hour shift the day before.
NBC Bay Area's Jodi Hernandez contributed to this report.