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Four Pepperdine students killed in crash

Authorities have arrested a suspect on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter.

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Four women fatally struck by a vehicle along Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, Calif., on Tuesday night were Pepperdine University students.

School officials have identified them as Niamh Rolston, Peyton Stewart, Asha Weir and Deslyn Williams. All were seniors set to graduate next May.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said the crash happened around 8:30 p.m. after a driver lost control of his black BMW and sideswiped three parked cars before fatally striking the victims. 

Authorities arrested Fraser Michael Bohm, a 22-year-old man, on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter, but later released him pending further investigation.

While still investigating, officers do not believe the driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, KTLA5 reported.

Another two victims were taken to a hospital. The severity of their injuries is unknown. 

“As we await further details from the investigation, we pray for our entire community,” a spokesperson posted to Pepperdine’s social media. “The university will provide updates as we receive additional information.”

Pepperdine, which is associated with Churches of Christ, is about four miles from where the wreck occurred. 

The university issued a statement under its emergency information Wednesday morning with locations for ministerial support and spiritual care available to distraught students and faculty.

“All are welcome to gather to find solace in the company of one another and to draw strength from our shared faith,” the post said. “May our faith, our prayers, and our love for one another uplift and support us during these difficult times.”

Pepperdine President Jim Gash later released a statement addressing the school community.

Jim Gash

Jim Gash

“To the students who loved, lived with, and were in community with the departed members of our Pepperdine family, my heart is broken with yours,” he said. “I join you in your grief as we process this profound loss.

“To the faculty and staff members who mentored and loved these students throughout their academic journeys both inside and outside the classroom, I offer prayers of comfort, support, and gratitude.

“In the days ahead,” he added, “we will come together in meaningful ways to honor and celebrate the lives of the remarkable individuals lost to this unthinkable tragedy. We will harness the strength found in the bonds of friendship and the community that unites us. And we will take comfort in the Lord who provides us with the supernatural strength and peace required to carry on.”

The Well held a special service of prayer and worship at 8 p.m. Wednesday night in the Amphitheatre. A second community prayer service is scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday in Stauffer Chapel.

Filed under: fatal crash National News Pepperdine Pepperdine University Top Stories vehicular manslaughter

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