Drunken Driver to Be Arraigned for Killing Woman and Injuring Her Fiancé

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WESTMINSTER — A man will be arraigned Monday for killing a 24-year-old woman and severely injuring her 24-year-old fiancé by hitting their motorcycle while under the influence of alcohol.

Tadashi Mizutani, 69, Huntington Beach is charged with one felony count of vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated without gross negligence, one felony count of driving under the influence causing bodily injury, one felony count of driving with blood alcohol .08 percent or more causing bodily injury, and a sentencing enhancement for inflicting great bodily injury.

If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum sentence of seven years and eight months in state prison. Mizutani is out of custody on $100,000 bail and is scheduled to be arraigned July 22 at 8:30 a.m. in Department W-2, West Justice Center, Westminster.

The Orange County District Attorney’s Office made the following allegations:

At approximately 8:30 p.m. on June 13, Mizutani drove his sports car northbound on Goldenwest Street in Huntington Beach. While turning left at the intersection of Goldenwest Street and Rio Vista Drive, he failed to yield to Taylor Rolfson and Kelly Morehouse as they legally passed through the intersection on their motorcycle.

Mizutani cut off the motorcycle and, despite Rolfson’s efforts, the vehicles collided, causing the couple to be thrown from the motorcycle.

Mizutani is accused of causing the crash that killed Morehouse and resulted in Rolfson breaking both of his legs.

Shortly after the crash, Huntington Beach Police Department officers arrived at the scene. Mizutani is accused of having a blood alcohol content of .13 percent.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Troy Pino of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting this case.

UPDATE: On July 22, Mizutani pleaded not guilty. He is next due in court on Sept. 10 for a pretrial hearing.

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