Once again, someone riding a bicycle was murdered by a hit-and-run driver.
This time in Pomona.
According to KTLA-5, the victim was trying to cross East End Avenue at Mission Blvd when he was run down by a passing motorist shortly after 5:30 this morning.
The victim, identified only as a man who appeared to be in his 50s, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver fled the scene, apparently without stopping.
There’s no word on whether the victim had lights on his bike in the early morning darkness. Then again, there’s no word on whether the driver was using his.
The fact that the victim was riding his bike in this weather suggests he had no other option, possibly just trying to get to work in the rain.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Pomona Police Department at 909/802-7741 or 909/620-2048.
This is at least the 14th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fifth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.
Six of those SoCal deaths have been hit-and-runs.
Sadly, the overwhelming majority of hit-and-run drivers get away with it. But in the unlikely event they do catch the driver, California’s lenient hit-and-run laws mean they will likely face just four years behind bars, at most.
Even then, prosecutors usually bargain down from that low level in order to get a guilty plea.
Which means most drivers just get a slap on the wrist for making the conscious decision to flee the scene, and leave an innocent victim to die alone in the street.
If they get caught. Which is a big if.
Update: The victim has been identified as 71-year old Pomona resident J. Guadalupe Perez-Nunez.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for J. Guadalupe Perez-Nunez and his loved ones.
Thanks to Johnson Attorneys Group for the heads-up.
Tragically, 26 bicyclists lost their lives on Los Angeles County roads last year. Will we surpass that number in 2023?