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Report: Driver in fatal crash had been drinking

An Estancia High School alumnus who died in June after a single-car crash had been drinking before getting behind the wheel, according to a report from the Orange County coroner's office.

Luis Adrian Torres, 19, of Costa Mesa, had a blood-alcohol level of 0.05% when he was tested at a hospital following the wreck along Susan Street, near Sunflower Avenue, according to results from a toxicology examination released Friday.

Alcohol and rate of speed are considered the primary factors contributing to the crash, said Darren Wood, a police traffic investigator with the Costa Mesa Police Department.

Although a 0.05% blood-alcohol level is below the legal limit for drivers older than 21 in California, a blood-alcohol level of 0.01% or above is illegal for drivers younger than the legal drinking age.

Torres weighed about 187 pounds. For someone of that weight to reach a blood-alcohol level of 0.05%, he would need to have consumed about two and a half beers in an hour, said Dr. Rodica Predescu, a North Hollywood toxicology expert.

Torres was taken to the Western Medical Center in Santa Ana after his 1990 Jaguar XJ-6 veered off the road and hit a tree about 12:36 a.m.

Torres succumbed to blunt-force injuries about four hours after the crash, according to the coroner's report.

A female passenger in the Jaguar was injured but has since been released from the hospital, Wood said.

 

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