General Crime

* Vincente Reza and Jose Varelas identified as men killed in crash after CHP pursuit

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The two men who died in a high-speed pursuit in downtown San Jose early Thursday morning have been identified as Vincente Reza, 22, and Jose Varelas, 23, according to the Santa Clara County medical examiner’s office.Reza and Varelas, both San Jose residents, died following an incident that began at about 1:25 a.m. Thursday when two San Jose area California Highway Patrol officers on patrol saw a green 2003 Ford Explorer with no front license plate and initiated a traffic stop.The Ford pulled over to the right shoulder of eastbound Carlysle Street west of North Almaden Avenue, but as the officers approached, the car sped off, according to the CHP.The officers returned to their patrol car, activated their lights and siren, and followed the Ford. They eventually lost sight of the SUV, so they stopped their pursuit and remained in the area to look for it.A short time later, the officers noticed the Ford several hundred yards ahead driving erratically on eastbound East Saint James Street approaching North Sixth Street, according to the CHP.As the officers activated their emergency equipment and went after the Ford, the SUV lost control, crashed into two parked cars and overturned.The CHP officers and San Jose police officers responded to the crash, and found four people inside the vehicle: a 19-year-old man who was driving, a male passenger in the front seat, and Reza and Varelas in the backseat,San Jose police Officer Jose Garcia said.Reza and Varelas were both pronounced dead at the scene, Garcia said.The driver and front-seat passenger were taken to a hospital with injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening, he said.San Jose police are handling the investigation into the crash while the CHP is investigating the events that led up to it, Garcia said.

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