Suspect Charged with Murder, Felony Hit-and-Run

March 10, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

A 32-year-old man was arraigned Tuesday on murder, felony hit-and-run and felony driving under the influence charges in connection with a crash in Maywood that injured two men in their 20s, one of them fatally.

Leopoldo Acuna Leon is accused of crashing into several vehicles and the two victims about 2:30 p.m. Friday on 59th Place near Heliotrope Avenue and trying to run from the scene, according to Lt. Samuel Arellano of the sheriff’s East Los Angeles Station.

Leon was collared by a Maywood city employee who held him until deputies arrived, Arellano said.

Both victims, ages 28 and 24, were taken to a hospital, where the older man was pronounced dead, according to Arellano.

The 24-year-old was treated for minor injuries and released.

Leon is being held without bail, Arellano said.

It’s unclear if he entered a plea.

Pedestrian Killed; Driver Flees the Scene

February 20, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

BOYLE HEIGHTS  – A 60-year-old man was struck and killed today in Boyle Heights by a hit-and-run motorist, who witnesses said might have been driving a dark gray BMW.

The BMW was going eastbound on Whittier Boulevard, just before Spence Street, when it hit the 60-year-old man a little after midnight while he was walking in the middle of the roadway, the Los Angeles Police Department reported.

Paramedics rushed the man to Los Angeles County/USC Medical Center, where he died from his injuries.

LAPD Central Traffic Division detectives asked anyone who may have witnessed the crash to call them at (213) 833-3713.

Atwater Village H&R Suspect Sought

December 30, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Police were searching Thursday for the hit-and-run driver who seriously injured a 19-year-old man crossing the street outside a marked crosswalk in the Atwater Village area.

The crash took place about 11:10 p.m. Wednesday, as Ryan Coreas was crossing Fletcher Drive, just south of Laclede Avenue, according to Los Angeles police.

A gold or beige mini-van heading south on Fletcher drive hit Coreas, according to the LAPD. The driver never stopped or slowed down to aid the injured teen.

The mini-van also reportedly had a luggage rack on its roof according to witnesses.

Fire department paramedics treated Coreas at the scene and transported him to a hospital in serious condition.

Tipsters can receive up to $25,000 from the city’s new “Hit and Run Reward Program Trust Fund” for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction or civil resolution of the driver and the hit-and-run accident.

Anyone with information on this driver was asked to call the LAPD’s Central Traffic Division at (213) 833-3713. Tipsters can also call the LAPD’s 24-hour tipline at (877) 527-3247 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS.

Victim’s Family Awarded $45M

September 8, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

A jury has awarded $45 million in damages to the four children of one of two women killed when an intoxicated driver being chased by the CHP crashed into a crowd at a taco truck in Boyle Heights during a 2012 chase.

A Los Angeles Superior Court jury deliberated for about an hour before finding that both Elba Jimenez, who was behind the wheel of the car that smashed into the two victims, and Maria Elena Rodriguez, who owned the vehicle her longtime girlfriend was driving, were jointly liable in the June 16, 2012, death of Claudia Fernandez.

The lawsuit was filed in June 2013 by the woman’s daughter and three sons. Rachel Fernandez, now 26, of South Gate, testified she was thrust into the role of mother to her brothers, now 19, 16 and 14, after their mother died at age 38. Each sibling was awarded $11.25 million.

Rachel Fernandez said outside the courtroom that she was still coming to grips with the size of the verdict and had trouble finding words to describe her emotions.

She said the family lived in Boyle Heights at the time and that her mother wanted tacos that night and went to buy them at the same truck where their family had gone many times before.

Rachel Fernandez said her mother did not know the other victim, 19-year-old Los Angeles resident Marlene Alatorre, whose family previously reached a settlement in a separate case filed against Jimenez and Rodriguez.

The Fernandez siblings’ attorney, John Carpenter, said he was happy with the verdict announced Sept. 2. He had argued to the jury that Rodriguez knew Jimenez was drunk, but did not try to take the keys away from her.

“I’m pleased that the jury found that Ms. Rodriguez was the owner of the car,” Carpenter said. “This accident could have been prevented if she had exercised reasonable care.”

Carpenter said the California Highway Patrol abided by proper procedures during the brief chase and that his clients do not blame the department for what happened.

Carpenter has appealed Judge Malcolm Mackey’s previous ruling dismissing the part of the plaintiffs’ case against the owner of the property where the taco truck was parked. The lawyer says the location was dangerous because patrons were vulnerable to being hit by vehicles being driven at high speeds on the freeway offramp.

Carpenter declined to comment on the likelihood of the award being collected from Rodriguez and Jimenez, who was convicted in 2013 of two counts of second-degree murder and was sentenced that same year to 35 years to life in prison.

Lawyer Timothy McDonald, on behalf of Jimenez and Rodriguez, declined to comment on the verdict. He had argued to jurors that the blame for the deaths fell squarely on Jimenez.

“Elba’s at fault, that’s it,” McDonald said during his final argument. “I’d be stupid to stand up here and talk about it any further.”

McDonald maintained that the two women jointly owned the car and that Rodriguez, despite seeing Jimenez drink three shots of tequila at a party, did not know her girlfriend was drunk.

“My client (Rodriguez) saw her (Jimenez) drinking, nothing else,” McDonald said.

According to CHP, one of its officers began pursuing Jimenez, then 38, in the belief she was intoxicated as her car began weaving about 11:20 p.m. on the eastbound Santa Monica (10) Freeway near the Los Angeles Convention Center.

The officer followed the 2005 Toyota Camry — being driven at speeds up to 100 mph — onto the northbound Golden State (5) Freeway, where the officer tried to make a stop.

The driver refused to pull over and sped off the freeway at the Cesar Chavez Avenue offramp, where she ran a red light and went into a parking lot, where she crashed into a truck where tacos were being sold.

Rodriguez had driven separately to Los Angeles that day to meet Jimenez, who was already there visiting her mother. They both went to a party that night before heading home to Ontario, again in different vehicles, according to trial testimony.

First of Two Drivers that Fatally Hit Woman Flees Scene

August 26, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Authorities today sought public help to find the driver of the first of two vehicles that struck and fatally injured a pedestrian in the Cypress Park area of Los Angeles.

According to police, a woman in her 30s was struck by the two vehicles that were northbound on San Fernando Road near Loosmore Street as she crossed outside the marked crosswalk about 2:15 a.m. Thursday.

The woman, whose name was withheld pending family notification, died at a hospital.

“The driver of the primary vehicle left the scene, failing to stop, render aid and exchange information as required by law,” according to a Los Angeles Police Department statement. “The second driver involved in the accident stayed at the scene and cooperated with the investigation.”

The hit-and-run vehicle was described only as a white box truck. No description was released of the driver.

Anyone with information on the case was urged to call the LAPD Central Traffic Division at (213) 833-3713, or (877) LAPD-247.

Man Arrested in Connection to Vernon Hit-and-Run

July 15, 2016 by · 1 Comment 

A 29-year-old man suspected of causing a fatal accident in Vernon and fleeing the scene was arrested in Alabama and sent back to California to face charges, authorities said Friday.

Guillermo Ortiz was arrested in Demopolis, Alabama, July 2 when police stopped him for an expired registration on his big rig, Vernon police Sgt. Brandon Gray said.

“During the course of their investigation, Demopolis Police Department officers learned of an outstanding arrest warrant for Ortiz as a result of his involvement in a fatal hit and run traffic collision in the City of Vernon,” Gray said.

Vernon police detectives brought Ortiz back to Southern California on July 8 and booked him into the Huntington Park jail, the sergeant said.

Ortiz was arraigned on July 12 and pled not guilty to charges of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, DUI, fleeing the scene of a fatal traffic collision and fleeing the scene of a non-injury traffic collision, Gray said.

Ortiz was being held on $235,000 bail in the North County Correctional Facility in Castaic, with a return to a Norwalk court scheduled for July 26, according to inmate booking records.

Oritz is accused of running a red light while westbound on 37th Street on Saturday, April 30, and colliding with a pickup truck with two men inside that was northbound on Santa Fe Avenue, Gray said.

The Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck became lodged underneath the big rig’s trailer. Ortiz is accused of unhooking the trailer from his cab and driving away, Gray said.

The driver of the pickup suffered moderate injuries. The passenger, 28-year-old Armando Murillo, of Pacoima, was pronounced dead at the scene, Gray said.

South Gate Hit-and-Run Suspect Arrested in East Los Angeles

March 29, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

A man suspected of causing a hit-and-run collision in South Gate that killed two people, including a 15-year-old girl, and injured five others was arrested Tuesday.
Bryan Rojas, 22, was arrested around 1pm in East Los Angeles, according to Capt. Darren Arakawa of the South Gate Police Department.
He is suspected of causing the two-vehicle crash that occurred at 4:34pm Saturday near Garfield Avenue and El Paseo, Arakawa said. One of the vehicles careened into a pole.
Killed in the crash were Angie Ruiz, 15, and Lester Larios, 55, both of Bell. Five other people were injured, three of them critically.

Police said the Mitsubishi they were in was rammed by Mercedes-Benz, allegedly driven by Rojas. The driver of the Mitsubishi was turning into the
Town Center Plaza mall when the vehicle was struck by the Mercedes. It was unclear if the Mercedes driver ran a red light.
Police said Rojas fled the scene of the crash, in which he suffered an injury to his forehead.

 

Boyle Heights; Hit and Run Leaves a Man Dead

February 15, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

A 24-year-old man was dragged more than a hundred feet and killed Monday morning by a car, and the motorist backed up to dislodge the body before speeding away.

Los Angeles police said it just after midnight on Cesar E. Chavez at Chicago avenues, where the pedestrian crossed Chavez from the north and dragged underneath the vehicle for more than 100 feet.

The man’s body was dislodged after the driver drove into a driveway behind a business on Chicago Avenue. The driver then backed out of the driveway and fled northbound on Chicago.

The man was suffering from multiple blunt trauma injuries, and rushed to County-USC Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 12:41am.

The driver’s vehicle may have sustained damage to the left front and undercarriage.

Central Traffic Division detectives asked anyone with any information regarding the hit-and-run fatality to call them at (213) 833-3713.

Mujer Muere Después de Ser Atropellada en Boyle Heights

February 4, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Una joven madre, quien intentaba bajar a su hija de su auto estacionado, fue golpeada por un automovilista que se dio a la fuga a pie el sábado por la tarde en Boyle Heights, dijeron autoridades.

Los paramédicos llevaron a Korina Campos, de 27 años, al hospital del condado de Los Ángeles/USC Medical Center, donde fue declarada muerta más tarde. Los paramédicos también llevaron a su hija de 5 años de edad, al mismo hospital, donde se espera que se recupere, informó el Departamento de Policía de Los Ángeles.

Campos había estacionado su Honda Civic 1998 sobre la acera del lado oeste de Boyle Avenue, justo al norte de Whittier Boulevard, cuando fue atropellada por un Toyota Corolla 2001 que estaba pasando en dirección sur por la Avenida Boyle, alrededor de la 1:50pm del sábado.

“Antes de la colisión, el conductor del Toyota perdió el control de su auto cuando intentaba dar una vuelta en la carretera”, dijo la policía en un comunicado de prensa. “El auto del sospechoso giró en sentido contrario, golpeando a Korina y a su hija”.

El conductor del Toyota abandonó su auto en la escena y corrió hacia el sur en la Avenida Boyle. Fue descrito como un hombre latino de unos 30 años, llevaba una camiseta y pantalones de mezclilla.

Se cree que él sufrió una lesión en su abdomen y posiblemente estaba sangrando.

La policía dijo que una recompensa de $50,000 se le dará a quien provea información que conduzca a la identificación, captura y condena del sospechoso.

Detectives de la División Central de Tráfico de LAPD le piden a la comunidad reporten cualquier información relacionada con el accidente llamando al (213) 833-3713.

Woman Dies After Hit and Run in Boyle Heights

February 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

A young mother, attempting to unload her daughter from her just-parked car, was struck and killed in Boyle Heights by a hit-and-run motorist on Saturday, according to authorities.

Paramedics rushed Korina Campos, 27, to Los Angeles County/USC Medical Center, where she was later pronounced dead. Paramedics also took her 5-year-old daughter to the same hospital, where she is expected to recover, the Los Angeles Police Department reported.

Campos had parked her 1998 Honda Civic along the west curb of Boyle Avenue, just north of Whittier Boulevard, when she was struck by a 2001 Toyota Corolla, at around 1:50pm Saturday that was going southbound on Boyle Avenue.

“Prior to the collision, the driver of the Toyota lost control of his car as he attempted to negotiate a turn in the roadway,” police said in a news statement. “The suspect’s car rotated in a clockwise direction, striking Korina and her daughter.”

The driver of the Toyota abandoned his car at the scene and ran southbound on Boyle Avenue. He was described as a 30-year-old Latino man wearing a T-shirt and blue jeans.

He was believed to have suffered an injury to his abdomen area and was possibly bleeding from it.

Police said a $50,000 reward will be given to the community who provide information leading to the suspect’s identification, apprehension and conviction.

LAPD Central Traffic Division detectives asked anyone with any information regarding the crash to call them at (213) 833-3713.

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