Update: 3:59 p.m.:
A man is dead, Lazey J's in Lakeland Village is partially demolished, and the Riverside County Coroner's Office says the motive may have been suicide.
Lake Elsinore resident David Dobbs, 50, plowed a motorhome into Lazey J's Thursday morning and the coroner's office has now stated that "at this time in the investigation it appears to have been an intentional act, intended as a suicidal gesture."
The 2005 Gulf Stream Independence RV driven by Dobbs slammed into the roadhouse at 9:47 a.m.; Dobbs was pronounced dead at the scene and it took more than two hours to extricate his body.
Jerry McKeehan, owner of Lazey J’s, told Patch at the scene that the deceased was an infrequent patron of his bar. Locals also say the deceased belonged to the American Legion next door to Lacey J's. However, Patch checked with American Legion Post 200 and Dobbs was not listed in its membership database.
McKeehan added that no one was in Lazey J's at the time of the crash; a bartender who would have been there had returned home enroute because she had forgotten her cigarettes.
McKeehan told Patch he intends to reopen the roadhouse as soon as possible, but he acknowledged the damage is extensive. The building, which McKeehan said was built in 1907, is missing its front facade, and the gaping hole reveals the entire roadhouse interior.
It's unclear why Dobbs chose to careen into Lazey J's. McKeehan said he didn't know Dobbs well. According to bystanders, the RV was swerving southbound on Grand Avenue and plowed into the parking lot.
Witnesses reported that the man behind the RV wheel was "driving recklessly" at about 55 to 60 mph before making an abrupt right turn into Lazey J's parking lot, the California Highway Patrol stated in a news release Thursday afternoon.
The cause of the crash is under investigation, according to the CHP.
During the onscene crash investigation, authorities asked drivers to take precautions along Grand Avenue, where Lazey J's is located. Although traffic was allowed to pass on Grand as first responders worked the scene, Patch witnessed one non-injury fender-bender on the busy roadway caused by inattentive driving.
Check back for updates. --Toni McAllister contributed to this report.
Update 12:38 p.m.:
The front of Lazey J's was demolished in the crash, Patch has learned at the scene.
Traffic has not been adversely affected by the emergency.
Readers and witnesses have told Patch with information that the driver was a man who possibly had a medical emergency and lost control of the vehicle.
A motorhome crashed into Lazey J's Roadhouse in Lakeland Village Thursday, trapping the driver, who was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.
The crash was reported at 9:49 a.m. at, according to Cal Fire's Melody Hendrickson.
The driver had to be extricated but it was unclear whether the crash killed the motorist or whether some sort of medical emergency led to the death and crash.