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2 dead after wrong-way crash on Loop 303, driver in custody

The Arizona Department of Public Safety said a suspect is in custody and will face charges of manslaughter.

LITCHFIELD PARK, Ariz. — A crash caused by a wrong-way driver on Loop 303 caused the deaths of at least two people early Friday morning, the Arizona Department of Public Safety said.

Fabian Grimaldo, 21, is suspected of driving impaired in the wrong direction and hitting an SUV driven by Brian Vaughn, 61, of Surprise. 

DPS said Vaughn died at the scene and Joaquin Santiago-Ruiz, a 21-year-old passenger in Grimaldo's car, also succumbed to injuries sustained from the collision.

Grimaldo was taken to the hospital and is now in the process of getting booked into jail for charges of manslaughter, DPS said.

The crash was reported shortly before 4 a.m. on the Loop 303 near Bethany Home Road. 

This is a developing story. Tune in to 12 News for the latest updates.

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The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) offers driving tips to help keep people safe on the road. 

"There’s always room for improvement when it comes to road safety," the department said on its website. 

ADOT's suggestions include: 

  • Don’t speed or drive aggressively 

  • Never drive while under the influence of substances 

  • Avoid distractions while driving 

  • Wear your seatbelt and make sure all passengers are doing the same 

  • When an emergency vehicle is on the side of the road, move over 

  • Stay extra aware in work zones 

  • Be prepared for weather conditions that make driving dangerous 

Find more tips on the department's Driving Safety Homepage on ADOT's website here. 

"Real-time highway conditions are available on ADOT’s Arizona Traveler Information site at az511.gov, by calling 511, downloading the AZ 511 app and through ADOT’s Twitter feed, @ArizonaDOT," the department said.

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