Photo by Gustavo Castillo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Photo by Gustavo Castillo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
A suspected drunken driver who was behind the wheel of an SUV that crashed on Independence Day in Azusa, killing two of his children, was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of murder and held on $2 million bail.

Arcadio Varela Caliz, 31, was taken into custody at the Azusa police station, Azusa police Lt. Paul Dennis said.

The crash occurred about 7:30 p.m. July 4 at San Gabriel Canyon Road and Mountain Laurel Way. Caliz’s SUV went off the roadway about a half-mile north of the U.S. Forestry information booth, Dennis said.

“When officers arrived on scene, they located (the) vehicle down a steep ravine,” Dennis said. “The vehicle had come to rest on its roof.”

Killed were Andrea Caliz Martinez, 12, and Christopher Caliz Martinez, 8. The children’s mother, Marbella Martinez, 32, and the couple’s 13-year-old daughter survived the crash.

The 12-year-old girl was killed on her birthday, Dennis said.

“The subsequent investigation revealed that both alcohol and speed contributed to this fatality (crash),” Dennis alleged.

Caliz was charged Monday with two counts of murder, and is set to be arraigned Wednesday in a Pomona courtroom.

— City News Service 

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