Speed, impairment possible factors in deadly Mesa wreck

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MESA -- One person is dead and a second is in the hospital after a brutal single-car wreck in Mesa.

It happened at about 9:30 Wednesday night near Alma School Road and Ninth Street. There were two people in the car -- a man and a woman -- when it slammed into a pole.

According to police, impairment on the part of the driver was likely a factor in the wreck, as was speed.

Police have identified that driver as Alison Porter.

Sgt. Ed Wessing of the Mesa Police Department said Porter was speeding south on Alma School Road when she apparently lost control of her Nissan Altima. The car veered right and jumped the curb before plowing into a light pole. According to Wessing, the force of the impact nearly split the vehicle in half.

Porter's passenger, Justin Smith, suffered massive head injuries. The 22-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.

Porter suffered life-threatening injuries, including a broken leg and pelvis, as well as internal injuries. She was taken to the hospital and at last check was in serious condition.

While police do believe speed and impairment contributed to the collision, the investigation is not yet complete and no decision about possible criminal charges has been made.