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Man Arrested After Fatal Crash

September 17, 2000|GREG RISLING

A Canoga Park man was arrested on suspicion of murder after his pickup slammed into another vehicle at a Reseda intersection, killing a 34-year-old woman and injuring two people, authorities said Saturday.

Valentin Garcia Ayala, 29, was arrested by police Friday night after he allegedly tried to flee the accident, police said.

Maria Del Carmen Reyes of Canoga Park was killed in the crash, authorities said. She was in the front passenger seat of the vehicle that was struck by Ayala's truck.

Ayala was suspected of driving under the influence, said Los Angeles Police Officer Michelle Lopez of the Valley Traffic Bureau. Tests reveal Ayala's blood-alcohol level was 0.18, more than twice the legal limit, Lopez said.

The crash occurred about 7:40 p.m. at Saticoy Street and Corbin Avenue.

Ayala was driving his 1995 Dodge truck on Saticoy Street when he hit the victim's vehicle while it was making a left turn from Saticoy to northbound Corbin Avenue, authorities said.

Reyes was killed when the truck slammed into the passenger side of the car.

The driver of the car, 36-year-old Fernando Molina, suffered facial lacerations and was taken to an area hospital, authorities said. A 2-year-old boy and a 7-year-old girl riding in the back of the car suffered minor injuries.

Police said all the victims were wearing seat belts.

Witnesses told police they saw Ayala run away, but police found him a short time later and placed him under arrest.

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