General Crime

* Merced County DA Larry D. Morse Son Dylan Morse, 18, Plead Guilty To Fatal Crash Killing Alexander Ruiz, 25

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The son of Merced County District Attorney Larry D. Morse will plead guilty to all charges in connection with a vehicle crash that killed an Oakland man and critically injured another person, his attorney said this morning.Dylan Morse, 18, is scheduled to plead guilty before Sonoma County Superior Court Judge Ken Gnoss. His attorney Chris Andrian said his client faces a maximum term of 15 years in prison. Morse is charged with felony counts of vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated but without gross negligence, DUI and DUI with a blood/alcohol level of 0.08 percent or more. He also is charged with misdemeanor counts of having alcohol in his vehicle, having a fake driver’s license and possessing not more than 28.5 grams of marijuana.Morse was visiting his friend Ryne Spitzer, 19, of Merced, a Sonoma State University student, on Feb. 14. The two were drinking alcohol at a party at SSU and later purchased alcohol from a Safeway store, Andrian said.hey were returning to SSU from Sebastopol in a 1998 Volvo on Stony Point Road near state Highway 116 when Morse failed to stop at a red light and broad-sided a 1988 Honda that was driving east on Highway 116, according to the California Highway Patrol.The collision killed the Honda driver Alexander Ruiz, 25, of Oakland. Ruiz’s passenger Vanessa King, 25, of Berkeley, suffered a broken arm and collarbone and facial lacerations.Spitzer suffered brain injuries and paralysis. Morse was not injured.Members of the crash victims’ families were attending the change of plea hearing this morning. Andrian said Morse, who is present today but is undergoing rehabilitation in Florida, is changing his plea “because it is the only right thing to do.””My client had absolutely no interest in contesting any of this,”  Andrian said. “He didn’t want to prolong this for one additional day,” Andrian said. “He’s remorseful.”

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