An Orange County man was killed in a hit-and-run while riding his bike early Sunday morning. But for once, the driver didn’t get away.
According to the Orange County Register, 52-year old Anaheim resident Encarnacion Salazar Munoz was riding east on Ball Road, just east of Gilbert Street in unincorporated Anaheim, at 5:20 am when he was struck by an SUV headed in the same direction.
He died at the scene.
According to a CHP spokesman, the driver had veered into the the bike lane where Munoz was riding, and fled the scene after striking him.
KCBS-2 reports Anaheim police later spotted the driver, 25-year old Riverside resident Jason Roy Rocha, when they tried to pull him over for an unrelated traffic violation. Rocha fled from the police, losing the officers, until he crashed his Ford Expedition into a fence at the intersection of Seal Beach and Westminster boulevards in Seal Beach.
He reportedly came out of the SUV holding his arm as if he had a weapon; a Seal Beach cop responded by firing his gun, missing Rocha. He was taken into custody on suspicion of hit-and-run and driving under the influence.
Munoz leaves behind a wife and three kids. A GoFundMe page has been set up to help pay his funeral expenses; so far it has raised just $85 of the $25,000 goal.
This is the ninth bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, four of which have been hit-and-runs. He is the third person killed while riding in Orange County since the first of the year.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Encarnacion Salazar Munoz and his family.
Thanks to John Damman for the heads-up.