LOS BANOS -- Two women killed early Tuesday morning in a suspected DUI crash on Highway 152 have been identified as Sara Castro, 30, and Alicia Carranca, 35, of San Jose, according to the coroner offices in Stanislaus and Merced counties.
The suspect accused of causing the crash, Ali Farsad, 68, of San Jose, remains at the Merced County Jail on suspicion of DUI and gross vehicular manslaughter. He's being held in lieu of $300,000 bail.
The crash was reported at 1:07 a.m. in the eastbound lanes of Highway 152, west of Highway 33, near Santa Nella
According to the CHP, Farsad was driving a 2002 Ford Explorer west in the eastbound left lane of the highway.
Meanwhile, Manual Herrera, 23, of San Jose was driving a 1997 Ford F-150 in the eastbound left lane of Highway 152, traveling in the correct direction. He had three passengers.
The Explorer and the F-150 collided head-on. Farsad's Explorer came to rest in the eastbound lanes of Highway 152, and Herrera's F-150 ended up in the median.
Castro, who was the right front passenger in Herrera's vehicle, was pronounced dead at the scene. Carranca, who was in the back seat of Herrera's vehicle, was flown to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto and later pronounced dead, according to CHP.
The third passenger in Herrera's vehicle, 23-year-old Maria Can, was flown to Memorial Medical Center with major injuries.
Farsad suffered minor cuts, and Herrera suffered a cut to his forehead as well as pain in his right arm and hand.
-- Victor A. Patton