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Drunk Driving Suspected in Fatal Crash

May 10, 1998|TOM BECKER

A Mission Hills man was killed when his vehicle was hit by a suspected drunk driver traveling against traffic on Brand Avenue early Saturday morning, police said.

Juanito Benido, 27, was pronounced dead at the scene after his 1995 GMC Jimmy was struck by a 1977 Ford pickup truck.

Victor Salazar Galvan, 21, of Pacoima, was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and driving under the influence, said Los Angeles Police Department spokesman Mike Partain.

Galvan suffered moderate injuries in the crash and was listed in stable condition Saturday in the jail ward of Los Angeles County / USC Medical Center, Partain said.

The accident occurred at 1:50 a.m. when Galvan was driving west in the eastbound lanes of Brand, near Columbus Avenue, Partain said. The two trucks crashed head-on. Both men were traveling alone at the time.

The eastbound and westbound lanes of Brand Avenue are separated by a median strip, Partain said, and no other cars were in the area at the time.

"It's one of those cases where you just shake your head," Partain said.

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