Probe of actor's crash to take weeks

Times Staff Writers

Beverly Hills police said Tuesday it could take up to eight weeks to determine whether charges would be sought against a TV actor in the crash of his SUV, which killed a Beverly Hills High School student in the passenger's seat.

Lt. Mitch McCann said it will take that long for detectives to interview witnesses and to complete lab work and a crash analysis. Sources said Lane Garrison, the 26-year-old costar of the Fox drama "Prison Break," was given a blood test to determine whether he was intoxicated.

McCann has said Garrison showed symptoms of being drunk and that officers found containers of alcohol inside his 2001 Land Rover.

Authorities said Garrison lost control of his SUV Saturday night and crashed into a tree in the 300 block of South Beverly Drive. The crash killed 17-year-old Vahagn Setian. Two 15-year-old girls in the vehicle were taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. One has been released from the hospital and the other's condition has improved from critical to serious but stable, officials said.

The girls do not attend Beverly Hills High, and authorities did not release information about them.

The actor's attorney, Harland Braun, said the teens recognized Garrison in the checkout line at a grocery store and invited him to a party.

At the party, he had one drink from the bottle of alcohol he had just purchased. It was his second drink of the night. Earlier he had had a margarita with dinner, Braun said.

An hour later, as he was leaving the party to meet a woman, the teens asked if they could go with him. He said yes.

"These were fans that are tagging along to a store," Braun said.

The next thing Garrison recalled was waking up at the Century City hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries.

"At this point he doesn't remember anything about the accident," Braun said, adding that his client isn't even certain that he was driving. "He thinks so but he can't swear to it."

"There is always the possibility that someone put something in his drink," the attorney added.


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