The carnage continues on Southern California streets, as yet another person riding a bicycle has been killed by a heartless hit-and-run driver.
This time, the victim was just 15-years old.
The victim, identified as Colton resident Javier Gonzales, died at the scene less than 25 minutes later, after suffering major injuries.
Security cam video acquired by KCBS2/KCAL9 shows Gonzales was riding against traffic with three other boys when he was struck by the driver of a speeding pickup, who kept going without slowing down.
His friends immediately dropped their bikes and chased after the driver, but weren’t able to catch him or get the license plate.
Police are looking for a black or dark-colored full size pickup. Anyone with information is urged to call Riverside Police Department Traffic Detective Jeff Derouin at 951/826-8722, or email Jderouin@riversideca.gov.
They note that this is the fifth fatal crash in the city in just six days. But the other drivers at least had the basic human decency to remain at the scene.
Ironically, the driver would have been unlikely to face charges in this case if he or she had simply stopped after the crash. Now they face up to four years behind bars for felony hit-and-run.
This is at least the 22nd bicycling fatality in Southern California already this year, and the fifth that I’m aware of in Riverside County.
Seven of those deaths have been hit-and-runs.
Update: Police have arrested a 37-year old man as the hit-and-run driver who killed Javier Gonzales. As of March 24th, Rosendo Morales Caldera was being held without bail.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Javier Gonzales and all his family and loved ones.