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Man killed in Atwater motorcycle crash identified

A man killed Monday night after crashing his motorcycle into a bus during a high-speed chase in Atwater has been identified as Matthew Arrellano Paglino, 25, of Atwater.

Paglino was pronounced dead at the intersection of Clover Avenue and Buhach Road, the Merced County Coroner’s Office confirmed.

The motorcyclist was spotted at 8:18 p.m. near Juniper Avenue and Buhach Road “doing wheelies,” according to authorities.

The California Highway Patrol said Paglino sped away from an Atwater police officer. Less than a minute later, he lost control of his 1987 Harley Davidson motorcycle, struck a curb and skidded into the intersection, where he struck a Merced Transit Authority bus and died.

The bus was turning left from Clover Avenue onto Buhach Road. The motorcyclist ran a red light while entering the intersection, the CHP said.

Officer Moises Onsurez said Paglino’s speed during the chase had not been determined Tuesday, but he described it as a “high rate of speed.” Toxicology test results are pending, Onsurez said.

The bus driver, 27-year-old Ray Perez, was not injured. There were no passengers in the bus at the time of the crash, the CHP said.

Southbound traffic was shut down on Buhach Road for over an hour while more than a dozen officers investigated the scene.

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