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TPD: Suspect in wrong-way fatal collision identified, facing charges

Posted at 10:09 AM, Oct 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-15 13:36:53-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — Tucson police are investigating a deadly wreck that happened Oct. 9.

Police say the crash happened at about 10:20 p.m. in the 8000 block of East Tanque Verde Road.

Two vehicles were involved in the wreck.

One of the drivers, 47-year-old Douglas Phillip Bender, was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries. He drove a white 2012 Jeep Wrangler eastbound on Tanque Verde Road at high speeds.

TPD says he lost control of the vehicle and drove over a raised median into oncoming traffic, hitting a 2015 Hyundai Sonata, driven by 20-year-old Adam Ballerstein, head-on. Ballerstein was pronounced dead at the scene.

Bender has since been released from the hospital and was transported to Pima County Jail on second-degree murder and criminal damage charges.

Police say Bender was impaired at the time of the crash.