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D.A. Files 2nd Murder Charge Against Driver

August 03, 1989

The Los Angeles County district attorney's office has filed a second murder charge against accused drunk driver Harry Bouboushian after the second of his seven passengers died over the weekend from injuries sustained in a single-car accident July 16.

Bouboushian, who had been scheduled Tuesday to face his preliminary hearing on the original charges, instead was arraigned on additional second-degree murder and vehicular manslaughter charges involving the death of Arthur Bezekian, 14. Bezekian, who had been unconscious since the accident, had been on a life-support system at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

Deputy Dist. Atty. Jeffery Oscodar said prosecution and defense attorneys agreed to a postponement of the preliminary hearing.

Testimony of witnesses who are due to leave the country later this month will be taken today and Aug. 10.

Bouboushian, 34, had been charged with one count each of second-degree murder, vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, hit-and-run and two counts of felony drunk driving at his July 19 arraignment. He has pleaded not guilty to both the original and the new charges.

All charges stem from an accident that took place shortly before 11 p.m. July 16.

Police said Bouboushian was driving westbound on Los Feliz Boulevard at speeds exceeding 100 m.p.h. when he lost control of the car just west of Vermont Avenue and crashed into a light standard. The car became airborne and struck two parked cars, police said.

Armine Karapetian, Bouboushian's wife, died at the scene. Bezekian was one of four passengers who were seriously injured.

Bouboushian, an Inglewood auto body shop owner with two previous drunk-driving convictions, had completed a court-ordered drunk-driving treatment program just three days before the accident and had six outstanding speeding tickets, one for driving in excess of 100 m.p.h.

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