A longtime investigator for the Santa Barbara County district attorney's office was killed in a collision believed to have been caused by a 22-year-old drunk driver, authorities said Friday.
Laura Cleaves, 53, of Santa Ynez, was driving home from work late Thursday night when her car was struck by a Mercedes that crossed a double yellow line on California 154, said Highway Patrol spokesman Dan Barba.
About 11:30 p.m. Thursday, CHP officers were alerted to a possible drunk driver. They found Ashley Johnigan of Santa Barbara with her car stopped and partly blocking an eastbound lane.
After they parked and walked toward her car, she sped off, officers said, hitting Cleaves' car in the oncoming lane and colliding with an SUV.
Both Johnigan and the SUV driver suffered minor injuries.
Johnigan was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving.