Friday, April 6, 2007

Illegal Aliens Kill Christmas

In a sad scene repeated every day in this country, American Citizens are once again the victim of drunk-driving illegal aliens. The only difference this time is that the victims were well known.

(04-05) 23:21 PDT Los Angeles (AP) --

Federal authorities have placed an immigration hold on a 24-year-old Mexican national arrested on suspicion of driving drunk and causing the crash that killed "A Christmas Story" director Bob Clark and his son, officials said Thursday.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement put the hold Wednesday on Hector Velazquez-Nava, an illegal immigrant living in Los Angeles, said agency spokeswoman Virginia Kice.

The action means Velazquez-Nava will be turned over to federal immigration officials and placed in deportation proceedings once his local case is completed. He was arrested for investigation of driving under the influence of alcohol and gross vehicular manslaughter, and was being held on $100,000 bail in a county jail.

If he were to post bail, Velazquez-Nava would be taken into federal custody on the immigration hold, Kice said.

Police allege Velazquez-Nava steered his sport utility vehicle into the wrong lane of Pacific Coast Highway in Pacific Palisades early Wednesday, striking Clark's sedan head-on. The filmmaker and his son, Ariel Hanrath-Clark, 22, died at the scene.

Velazquez-Nava had a blood-alcohol level of 0.24 percent, three times the 0.08 legal limit for driving, the Los Angeles Times reported on its Web site Thursday evening. A police spokesman said he could not immediately confirm the report.

Authorities have said Velazquez-Nava was driving without a license. He and his passenger, Lidia Mora, 29, of Azusa, were treated for minor injuries after the crash.

Velazquez-Nava had no prior deportations but was convicted in March 2005 of soliciting a prostitute in South Los Angeles, court records show. He received 24 months probation and a $1,500 fine after pleading no contest. At the time, he also was accused of not having a valid license.

It was unclear whether Velazquez-Nava had retained an attorney. There was no phone listing under his name.

Clark had a prolific movie and TV directing career. He specialized in horror movies and thrillers early on, directing such 1970s movies as "Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things,""Murder by Decree,""Breaking Point" and "Black Christmas," which was remade last year.

His breakout success came with 1981's sex farce "Porky's," a coming-of-age romp that he followed two years later with "Porky's II: The Next Day."

In 1983, he directed, co-produced and co-wrote "A Christmas Story," an adaptation of Jean Shepherd's childhood memoir of a boy in the 1940s.

The film starred Peter Billingsly as Ralphie Parker, a young boy determined to get a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas.

While a modest theatrical success, the movie was a critical darling and eventually joined "It's a Wonderful Life" and "Miracle on 34th Street" as one of the Christmas films audiences watch year after year.

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