A man who allegedly caused a Mountain View-area freeway pileup that killed a Las Vegas couple and injured two other people and then fled the scene is in custody Tuesday on suspicion of drunken driving and hit-and-run.
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California Highway Patrol investigators arrested 28-year-old Pedro Antonio Sainz at his San Diego home in the late morning, CHP Officer Art Athans said.
Shortly before 2:30 a.m. Sunday, Sainz lost control of his northbound 1994 Honda Civic on Interstate 805, authorities said. The vehicle crashed into a 2005 Toyota Matrix occupied by Ramiro Aguilar, 66, his 47-year-old wife, Bertha, and a 13-year-old relative, according to the CHP.
The Matrix overturned and rolled several times before coming to rest in the middle of the freeway, just south of Imperial Avenue. Sainz allegedly pulled over to the right-hand shoulder, got out of his car and ran off.
Other motorists stopped to aid the occupants of the Matrix. Moments after getting the teenage back-seat passenger out of the crumpled hatchback, a 1997 Toyota Tacoma truck plowed into it, ejecting Ramiro Aguilar, who had been driving, onto the roadway along with his wife.
A short time later, a northbound motorcyclist came on the scene and crashed his 2007 Yamaha YZF while trying to avoid the overturned car.
Bertha Aguilar died at the scene. Medics took her husband to Scripps Mercy Hospital, where he died about eight hours later. The teenager who had been in the Matrix was not injured.
The driver of the pickup, 27-year-old Fernando Guzman of San Diego, was transported to a hospital for treatment of moderate injuries, the CHP spokesman said. The motorcyclist, Robert Landa, 32, of San Diego suffered severe injuries and was still hospitalized Tuesday afternoon, according to Athans.
Guzman and all three occupants of the Matrix were wearing seat belts at the time of the crashes, the Highway Patrol reported.
Sainz was being held in San Diego Central Jail. Bail was set at $150,000 pending arraignment, which is scheduled for Thursday afternoon.
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