This morning we mentioned a breaking news report about a fatal crash between two drivers in South LA’s Florence neighborhood that may have involved two people on bicycles.
Sadly, our worst fears have bee confirmed, although several of the details were wrong.
According to multiple sources, 54-year old James Findley was killed when he was struck by a single driver around 10:35 pm at the intersection of 82nd Street and South Broadway in the Florence neighborhood of South LA.
The reports indicate Findley was riding on 82nd Street when he was run down by one of two drivers who were allegedly street racing north on Broadway.
That driver remained at the scene after crashing into several parked cars, while the other took off without stopping.
Findley was pronounced dead at the scene.
No other bike rider was involved in the crash, despite the presence of two badly mangled bicycles, as seen in this screen shot from the KNBC-4 broadcast, with one attached to a bike trailer.
Findley may have been ghost riding the other bicycle, which is where a person rides one bicycle while towing another riderless bike alongside.
It’s also possible that the second bike may only appear to be damaged, and could have been left by a bystander.
He was just a half block from the Florence home he shared with his sister, who heard the crash and immediately recognized his bike.
Findley is described as the second youngest out of nine brothers and sisters, and leaves behind an adult son.
According to KCBS-2, the driver who hit him admitted to street racing; however, that has not been confirmed by other sources. He was arrested on suspicion of gross negligence and vehicular manslaughter.
Police are searching for the missing motorist on a possible charge of hit-and-run. Drivers can be responsible for hit-and-run if they leave the scene after causing a crash, regardless of whether they were actually involved.
This is at least the seventh bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also the first in the city of Los Angeles.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for James Findley and all his loved ones.
Thanks to Steve S and Sindy Saito for the heads-up.