TikTok star died in ‘police chase while driving illegal immigrants across border’

TikTok star Gabriel Salazar died while involved in a police chase after driving illegal immigrants across the Mexican border, officers have said.

The 19-year-old died in a crash at around 1.25am on Sunday, September 26 near La Pryor in Texas, US.

Gabriel, who had 1.3 million followers on the social media app, is said to have been driving three undocumented male immigrants into the States from the border with Mexico.

Zavala County Sheriff’s Office say that the three passengers – Jose Luis Jimenez-Mora, 41, Jose Molina-Lara, 23, and Sergio Espinoza-Flores, 36 – also died in the crash.

Police say a deputy had overheard a call from the Crystal City Police Department after they initiated a stop on a 2014 Chevrolet Camaro that Gabriel was driving.

Gabriel died in a car crash
(
gabenotbabee/Instagram)

The cop who had stopped the car told deputies that he was in “active pursuit” of the vehicle.

A post made by the Sheriff’s Office on Facebook said their deputy had “assisted with deploying a tire deflation device but was unsuccessful”.

Investigators say Gabriel drove off the road, over-corrected and rocketed across the highway into a ditch.

Police say his vehicle hit several trees, rolled over and became engulfed in flames.

Police say he was driving illegal immigrants across the US-Mexico border

It’s not known what caused police to initiate the traffic stop, and the Texas Department of Public Safety is investigating what happened.

News of Gabriel’s death broke online on Monday when his devastated friends began leaving tributes for him.

Gabriel had accumulated more than one million followers on TikTok under his username @gabenotbabe.

He last posted four days before his death was reported.

He regularly posted funny videos of himself and his friends, as well as clips of himself lipsyncing to songs.

He was 19
(
gabenotbabee/Instagram)

Fellow social media star Ricky Flores shared his heartbreak on Instagram as he posted a string of pictures of himself and Gabriel together.

He wrote: “Rest easy brother. Words can’t even explain how I feel right now. Man, I would do anything to get you back right now bro.”

Ricky also shared a link to a GoFundMe page set up to raise money for a memorial for his late friend.

It aimed to raise $25,000 and at the time of writing has surpassed its goal, with people donating $38,305.

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