HOUSTON - Six people are dead and two more are in the hospital after a crash at an intersection near Downtown Houston early Saturday morning.
The University of Houston confirmed that former University of Houston football players D.J. Hayden, Zach McMillian, and Ralph Oragwu were among those who died in the crash. Hayden was also a first-round NFL draft pick for the Raiders in 2013.
According to Houston police, the crash occurred around 2 a.m. in the 2000 block of Fannin at Pierce. Police have only confirmed that five men and a woman were among those who died.
The five men who died were 31-year-old Izuchu Oragwu, 31-year-old Frank Johnson, 32-year-old Zachary McMillian, 33-year-old Derek Hayden, and 25-year-old Christian Herrera. The deceased woman was 32-year-old Lauren Robinson.
Hayden was in his first year working as a Defensive Back Coach at Second Baptist School in Houston.
Las Vegas Raiders, the former team of Hayden, released a statement saying, "The Raiders Family is mourning the tragic loss of former cornerback D.J. Hayden. The Raiders' first-round draft pick out of the University of Houston in 2013, D.J. overcame a heart injury sustained in a college practice to play nine years in the NFL, including his first four with the Silver and Black."
According to police, an Acura SUV was traveling eastbound on Pierce with a green light when a Chrysler 300 going southbound on Fannin ran a red light.
The investigation revealed that Robinson was driving a black Acura SUV eastbound on Pierce Street with a green light when the accident occurred. Christian Herrera ran a red light while driving a black Chrysler 300 at high speed southbound on Fannin Street, crashing into Robinson's Acura.
Police say the impact resulted in three people being ejected from the Acura. The Chrysler veered off the road, hit a sidewalk, and struck Johnson, a pedestrian.
Both drivers, Robinson and Herrera, were killed at the scene. Paramedics also pronounced Johnson and Oragwu deceased at the scene. McMillian and Hayden were later pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.
Two other Acura passengers, a 32-year-old male and a 30-year-old female, are currently hospitalized, authorities say. The woman is in critical but stable condition, while the man is in stable condition. Both individuals can communicate.
The University of Houston Athletics released this statement:
"The entire University of Houston community is heartbroken over the tragic passing of former Football student-athletes D.J. Hayden, Zachary McMillian and Ralph Oragwu earlier today, and our thoughts and prayers remain with Jeffery Lewis in his recovery ahead. We extend our deepest condolences to their families, friends, and loved ones, as we collectively mourn the loss of three individuals who made an indelible impact on each life they touched. While their combined talents provided Houston Football some of its most unforgettable moments, their unique legacies will best be remembered for the way they loved their teammates, supported their communities and defied the odds."
The investigation continues.