News from around the Ojai Valley

Highway 33 crash victims identified as two Santa Paula teens

Ruth Cortez Zuniga


Two teenagers who were found dead where their car went off Highway 33 down a 200-foot cliff north of Ojai, just past the first tunnel, have been identified as driver Absolam Rivas, 19, and passenger Ruth Cortez Zuniga, 18, both of Santa Paula, according to Officer J. McKay of the California Highway Patrol.
The 1991 Toyota Corolla landed on its roof in the creek.
The single-vehicle crash was reported by a passing motorist who called 911 at about 4 p.m. Friday, May 24. There were no witnesses to the crash, McKay stated in a press release. The CHP, Ventura County Fire Department and Lifeline ambulance personnel responded to the crash site and both teenagers were pronounced deceased at the scene, McKay stated.
According to family members who posted information on Facebook, Zuniga and Rivas had been missing since May 22 after Rivas picked up Zuniga around 5 p.m., indicating she was going to Oxnard or Ojai.
Zuniga attended Santa Paula High School.
This article will be updated. The photo above is of Ruth Cortez Zuniga from her Instagram.
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