Passenger Killed in Freeway Crash; One of Injured Drivers Is Arrested

From United Press International

A woman was killed and six people were injured when a suspected drunk driver veered into a family’s car on the freeway, the California Highway Patrol said Saturday.

Carol Smart, 43, of Seal Beach was pronounced dead at 9:18 p.m. at Whittier Presbyterian Hospital after the car in which she was riding struck another on the Golden State Freeway near Beverly Boulevard at 8:15 p.m., CHP Officer Richard Perez said.

Clayton Ball, 50, of Stanley, N.C., the driver of the car in which Smart was riding, was booked on suspicion of felony drunk driving after being treated for moderate injuries at the same hospital, Perez said. Another passenger, Bettey Stuckey, 45, of Seal Beach suffered minor injuries.

Ball was in the fast lane of the Golden State Freeway near Beverly Boulevard when he suddenly swerved across two lanes and into the car driven by Michael Viramontes, 18, of Los Angeles, Perez said.


Viramontes and three others in the car were treated at Beverly Hospital in Montebello, Perez said. Viramontes suffered minor injuries. His wife Anita Tirado, 21, and children, Michael Viramontes Jr., 2, and Monica Viramontes, 2 months, were treated for minor injuries, Perez said.