They call it hit-and-run.
I call it murder.
According to the LA Daily News, a man was killed riding his bike in the Arleta neighborhood of Northwest Los Angeles, in what appears to be the first fatal bicycling collision this year.
And almost needless to say, driver fled the scene, leaving his victim bleeding in the street.
The crash occurred on Branford Street west of Arleta Avenue around 7 pm last night.
The victim, identified only as a 30-year old man pending notification of relatives, was taken to a nearby hospital, where he died.
Police are looking for the driver of a light-colored Mercedes sedan. No further information was given for the car or the heartless coward who stepped on the gas instead of stopping and rendering aid, as required by law.
And no explanation was given for why the police asked for the public’s help in finding the driver, yet once again failed to use the hit-and-run alert systems established by both the City of Los Angeles and the State of California.
Anyone with information is urged to call the LAPD Valley Traffic Division at 818-644-8022.
When they find this driver — or any other killer hit-and-run driver — they should be subject to a second-degree murder charge. Because the crash may have been unintentional, but the decision to leave their victim dying in the street wasn’t.
This is at least the second bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also the first in the City of Los Angeles. That compares to at least 17 in the city last year, and 34 for the county.
And leaves us with a 100% hit-and-run rate for fatal bike crashes this year.
Update: KCBS-2 has identified the victim as 36-year old Los Angeles resident Jesus “Gallo” Urbina; he was married with two sons, nine and six.
Urbina, who had recently been homeless, was taking water to his friends on the street when he was killed.
As a friend of his described the hit-and-run, “That’s heartless. That’s demonic. That’s evil.”
That sounds about right.
Anyone with information is urged to call LAPD detectives at 818/644-8022.
A ghost bike will be installed at the location this Thursday.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jesus “Gallo” Urbina and all his family and loved ones.