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Duarte Man Charged With Murder, Drunk Driving In Fatal 210 Freeway Crash

POMONA ( — A Duarte man Tuesday was charged with the murder of a 19-year-old man in a wrong-way crash that occurred on the 210 Freeway over the weekend.

According to authorities, Tyler White Thompson, 24, was additionally charged with one felony count each of drunken driving, leaving the scene of an accident and driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury within 10 years of another drunken-driving offense.

Thompson received a misdemeanor count of driving with a revoked or suspended license due to not having insurance, officials said.

According to California Highway Patrol, the head-on collision occurred in Azusa shortly after 3 a.m. Saturday in the westbound lanes of the 210 Freeway.

The victim, Justin Romo, was driving with his 16-year-old girlfriend in his 1992 white Nissan, when Thompson swerved and crashed his 1997 black Honda Accord into Romo's vehicle, police said.

Officials said Romo was pronounced dead at the scene, and his girlfriend was transported to County-USC Medical Center for treatment of moderate injuries.

Thompson fled on foot and was later arrested at his home in Duarte, police said.

As a result of the crash, all of the westbound lanes on the freeway, west of Vernon Avenue, were closed for about four hours.

According to authorities, Thompson was previously convicted for injuring another victim while driving drunk in June 2011.

Thompson is being held on $1.1 million and is expected to make a court appearance Sept. 10 at his rescheduled arraignment.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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