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State probes source of alcohol consumed before deadly crash

August 3, 2012 |  2:14 pm

DuiA crash involving an alleged drunk driver that claimed the lives of two of her three passengers has led to an investigation by state alcohol regulators after a photo was discovered posted online by one of those later killed showing the foursome drinking at a Los Angeles bar hours earlier.

The car, driven by 22-year-old Christine Meng, plunged off the interchange between the 10 and 710 freeways about 1 a.m. Wednesday.

Meng was found to have a blood alcohol level of .11%, well over the legal limit, at the time of the accident that killed Simon Magat, 23, and Joseph Almario, 21, both of San Gabriel, according to the California HIghway Patrol. Meng and a third passenger, Jason Lieu, 22, survived.

Before the crash Magat had posted an Instagram photo that showed the group at the Villains Tavern, a popular bar and eatery in downtown L.A. All four are seen holding drinks. Below the photo Magat wrote, "Drrrannnks with the homies."

John Carr, a spokesman for the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, said that while the CHP is investigating the crash, ABC investigators are looking into the circumstances related to alcohol consumed before the accident.

Officials did not say whether the group went to any other bars before Meng drove onto the freeway.

ABC investigators will try to determine if a bartender served alcohol to a visibly intoxicated person. Under the law, bars are required to deny alcohol to such individuals.


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-- Richard Winton

Photo: Simon Magat, one of two people killed in a crash involving an alleged drunk driver, posted online this photo of himself and three friends at a bar the night he died.