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Van Hit by Car; Couple Killed

August 18, 1986

An Arcadia couple were killed and two of their sons badly injured Sunday morning when a driver believed to be drunk sped over the center line of Highway 126 in the Santa Clarita Valley and rammed head-on into the family's van, authorities said.

Killed in the 10:05 a.m. crash on a two-lane highway near Indian Dunes Park were James Jones, 44, and his wife, Catherine, 42.

They and their sons had been traveling to pick up a third son from summer camp, said California Highway Patrol Officer Alex Gonzalez.

Authorities arrested the driver of the car, Luis Moraza, 42, of Sylmar. He was under guard Sunday night at Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital in Valencia, being treated for minor injuries, Gonzalez said.

The CHP officer said Moraza will be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and either involuntary manslaughter or murder.

One of the couple's sons, 5-year-old Gary, was airlifted to Childrens Hospital of Los Angeles, where he was undergoing surgery late Sunday night for multiple fractures. A hospital spokeswoman said he had been in critical condition before the surgery.

The other accident victim, Scott Jones, 17, was being treated for what were termed major injuries at Newhall Memorial Hospital. The hospital did not disclose the nature of the injuries.

Gonzalez said, according to witnesses, Moraza appeared to be driving east on the highway at speeds of up to 75 m.p.h when he steered his 1977 Thunderbird onto the right shoulder, then swerved back into oncoming traffic.

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