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Victim killed in wrong-way crash identified
By: Elena Arteaga, Ruben Veloz and Jesse Martinez
EL PASO, Texas -- One man was killed, another was injured in an early morning accident on Interstate 10 near the Zaragoza exit.
The accident was reported at 2:24 a.m. Thursday.
El Paso police said a 49-year-old man driving a gold-colored 2004 Mercedes Benz 320 was going the wrong way on the eastbound lanes of I-10 when he crashed head-on into a 2007 Mazda.
Police said Gabriel Morales, 29, was killed instantly. Officers have not said how long the driver had been driving the wrong way.
A third driver was also involved in the accident, but was not seriously injured.
The 49-year-old man was taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Investigators do believe alcohol may have contributed to this accident.
"We do believe that alcohol is going to be a factor in this crash on behalf of that driver," said Mike Baranyay, spokesman with El Paso police.
Charges may be filed pending the results of the investigation, said Baranyay.
"Since a person died as a result of the crash it is a mandatory blood draw situation, so blood will be drawn from the driver at the hospital, that blood will be sent to the laboratory to be examined and we'll be able to examine the blood alcohol content of that driver."
Traffic was being diverted off I-10 on Gateway east at the Zaragoza exit for more than five hours.