A July 6 highway collision that killed two Columbia residents, including the chief liquor inspector in Montgomery County, was alcohol-related, county police said yesterday.

Killed in the 2:45 a.m. accident were Kristine Michelle Weber, 23, whose blood alcohol reading was over the legal limit, and Richard Edward Daley, 54, who was returninghome after a long night of cracking down on liquor law violators.

Weber's blood alcohol level was .16, police said. The legal limitis .10.

"It's always tragic when someone dies in a drunk-driving accident, but it's especially hard when it happens to someone whose soul and work is committed to preventing it," said Daley's daughter, Ann Daley of Ellicott City.

The accident occurred on Route 32 in Simpsonville when Weber, of the 11000 block of Willow Bottom Drive, lost control of her car and collided with Daley's pick-up truck.

Weber was pronounced dead at the scene. Daley, who lived in the 8400 block Freedom Court, died at Howard County General Hospital.

Daley hadbeen working a liquor crackdown at several Montgomery County bars the night he was killed, said his daughter, Ann Daley, who is a Howard County police patrol officer.

"He often stayed late on the job, mapping out bars where he suspected alcohol was being served to intoxicated people," she said. "It was his job to try and stop people from driving home drunk, and he took it very seriously."

Daley had been a chief liquor inspector in Montgomery County since January 1990. Prior to that, he was a Washington, D.C., police officer for 23 years.

Weber, who had recently moved to Rockville, was apparently was on her way to stay at her parents' home, said her mother, Carla Weber.

"Both families are suffering. I'm very sorry for everyone involved,"Carla Weber said. "The pieces just don't fit together. Kris wasn't adrinker and she wasn't a lawbreaker. She knew right from wrong."

Kristine Weber had overcome a four-year battle with thyroid cancer atthe age of 13, a personal achievement that her mother called "bittersweet at best" in light of her recent tragic death.

Carla Weber said that her daughter had just started a new job and had been very happy.

"She fought cancer only to die 14 years later in a car accident," she said. "There is no fairness in death."

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