Tag Archive for bicycling fatality

Update: Woman killed riding bike in Ojai collision; tenth SoCal bike death in past 30 days

Bad news from Ojai, where a woman was killed riding her bike Friday night.

According to the Ojai Valley News, the victim, who has not been publicly identified, was riding alone in the 1000 block of Cuyama Road, near Del Norte Road, when she was somehow struck by the driver of a vehicle.

She was pronounced dead at the scene, despite the efforts of firefighters to resuscitate her.

The paper places the time of the crash at around 6:57 pm. The driver reportedly remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators.

Unfortunately, no other information is available at this time.

A street view shows a narrow, two lane country road with no shoulders.

This is at least the 38th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the second that I’m aware of in Ventura County.

It’s also the tenth SoCal bicycling death in just the past 30 days.

Update: The victim has been identified as 78-year old Ojai resident Marion Weil, who deserved better. The driver is identified only as a 40-year old Ojai man. 

Anyone with information is urged to call Ventura County Sheriff’s Department Sr. Traffic Investigator Shawn Holzberger at 805/388-5146.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Marion Weil and all her loved ones.

59-year old man killed riding bike in Fontana collision; Adolph “Ray” Trujillo was the 9th SoCal bike death this month

This has got to stop.

Southern California streets keep claiming more victims, as traffic rebounds to pre-lockdown levels with little or no accommodation for the jump in bike riding in recent months.

The latest victim was a popular Fontana barber who was killed by a driver late Sunday night.

According to a notice from the San Bernardino County Coroner, 59-year old Fontana resident Adolph “Ray” Trujillo was struck by a vehicle while riding his bike in 1600 block of Baseline Ave around 11:50 pm.

He died at the scene less than 15 minutes later.

The Fontana Herald News offers a little more detail, placing the crash near the intersection of Baseline and Juniper Avenues in Fontana.

According to the paper, Trujillo was riding east on Baseline when he was somehow run down by an 18-year old driver.

There’s no word on which direction the driver was going, or just how the crash may have occurred.

Baseline is a six-lane divided roadway with bike lanes in both directions, with wide, straight highway-like lanes where drivers could easily exceed the 45 mph speed limit, particularly at that late hour.

This is at least the 37th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fifth that I’m aware of in San Bernardino County. It’s also the ninth SoCal bicycling death this month alone, and the 13th in the last two months.

Something has to be done now to stop this rising tide of traffic violence.

Because Ray Trujillo deserved better.

And do we all.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Adolph “Ray” Trujillo and all his loved ones.

Update: Man killed riding his bike in early morning Long Beach hit-and-run; 3rd LA County bike rider killed in hit-and-run in 4 days

It’s not an epidemic anymore.

It’s a SoCal pandemic.

According to multiple sources, yet another Southern California bike rider lost his life early Sunday morning.

And yet another heartless coward fled the scene, leaving an innocent victim to die in the street.

The Long Beach Police Department reports the victim, who hasn’t been publicly identified, was riding south on Orange Ave, north of Del Amo Blvd, when he was run down from behind by a southbound driver around 3:20 am.

Despite the efforts of paramedics, he died at the scene, his body coming to rest in the bike lane he was most likely riding in.

There’s no information about the driver or the suspect vehicle at this time.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Detective Kelsey Myers or Detective Shawn Loughlin of the LBPD Collision Investigation Detail at 562/570-7355.

This is at least the 36th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also the third fatal bicycling hit-and-run in the county in four days.

Exactly one third of those SoCal bike deaths have involved hit-and-run drivers, including five in less than the last two weeks, and eight in the past two months as more people have begun driving again.

This has got to stop.

Now.

Update: The victim has been identified as 30-year old Long Beach resident Dannon Santiago.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Dannon Santiago and his loved ones.

37-year old father killed riding bike in South Los Angeles hit-and-run; once again, public not informed for weeks

Once again, a man has died following a violent hit-and-run while riding his bike in South Los Angeles.

And once again, the LAPD doesn’t seem to think the public needed to know about it.

According to KCBS-2/KCAL-9, 37-year old South LA resident Jorge Guerra was struck by a hit-and-run driver while riding home from the park with his two young children on July 8th.

Fortunately, his two-year old son Nathan and four-year old daughter Madelyn weren’t seriously injured; their father wasn’t so lucky.

Guerra was rushed to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, but lapsed into a coma after arriving; he died of organ failure on July 16th.

The LAPD places the crash on northbound Wadsworth Ave north of 88th Street at 8:40 pm, when a speeding driver slammed into the bike they were riding after turning onto the narrow residential street.

The driver continued north on Wadsworth, crashing into several parked cars before stopping just south of Manchester Blvd. He ran off, leaving the damaged car behind.

Police are still looking for the suspect, who hasn’t been identified; unsurprisingly, the car he was driving was stolen. As always, there is a standing $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the driver.

Now Guerra’s wife is faced with raising her kids as a grieving single mother while in the middle of a pandemic.

A crowdfunding campaign to help defray Guerra’s funeral expenses has raised just under $6,000, far short of the $25,000 goal.

Unfortunately, like the death of Melvin “Peanut” Frye last month, the LAPD apparently failed to inform the public at the time of the crash — or alert them to a dangerous car thief hiding in their midst. Even though both Los Angeles and California have Yellow Alert systems to get the word out as quickly as possible.

There’s no explanation for why the LAPD continually refuses to use them; evidently, they’d rather wait until the trail goes cold and people have forgotten key details before asking for their help. Which could be one reason why hit-and-run drivers continue to get away with it here.

Even though similar systems have been used successfully in other cities to bring hit-and-run drivers to justice.

This is at least the 35th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County. Over half of those deaths in the county have been hit-and-runs.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jorge Guerra and all his family and loved ones.

Man killed riding bike in South LA hit-and-run last month; no alert or information from police for nearly 4 weeks

Note: Because of the time spent writing this piece, there will be no Morning Links today; we’ll be back tomorrow to catch up on anything we missed.

A hit-and-run alert system doesn’t do a damn bit of good if the police won’t use it.

That was the case last month, when a man was killed while riding his bike in a South LA hit-and-run.

Yet no information about the crash was released until a press conference was finally held yesterday morning.

The LAPD reports 57-year old Melvin “Peanut” Frye was killed when he was struck by a driver around 9:05 pm on June 27th, nearly one month ago.

Frye was run down by an unknown motorist as he was crossing Main Street at 103rd Street in the Broadway-Manchester neighborhood; he was riding west across Main while the driver was headed south.

He died at he scene.

The driver kept going, without stopping or identifying themself as required by law. Authorities are looking for a black or dark-colored Dodge Durango; no description was given for the driver.

No announcement appears to have been made at the time.

Then again, Frye’s family wasn’t even notified until more than a week later, after frantically calling hospitals and checking jail bookings before they were finally contacted by the coroner’s office.

The press conference was held to request the public’s help in solving the crime. The city offers a standing $50,000 award for information leading to an arrest and conviction for any fatal hit-and-run, regardless of whether the reward has been announced by the police.

According to KTLA-5, the victim’s sister is urging witnesses to come forward.

Mishy Frye said people have called her to relay information about the type of car involved, “and then nobody can give the detectives no information.”

“I’m just shocked, because you guys know him,” she said. “Everybody know him in this area. Everyone. It’s not right…”

“I want justice for him, not through you calling me, but call the detectives,” she said. “Holding onto a secret makes you no better than the person that hit him.”

In addition to LA’s citywide hit-and-run alert system, California has approved a statewide Yellow Alert system to notify the public in the event of a hit-and-run. Both are intended to alert the public as quickly as possible to watch for the suspect vehicle in the event of a hit-and-run, and encourage witnesses to come forward while the event is still fresh in their minds.

Not a month later.

Had the police released information about the crash at the time, along with announcing the standing reward, someone might have come forward by now.

And maybe Frye’s family could have been spared the pain of not knowing what had happened to him for ten long days after the crash. Let alone knowing that the heartless coward who killed him is still out there.

Anyone with information is urged to call LAPD Detective Keith Gonzales at 323/421-2500, or 323/421-2577 after normal business hours.

This is at least the 34th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

Half of those deaths in LA County have been hit-and-runs.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Melvin “Peanut” Frye and all his loved ones.

 

Bike rider killed by hit-and-run driver in Perris crash; victim identified as 64-year old Perris man

Once again, a man has been killed riding a bicycle on the mean streets of Southern California.

And once again, a heartless coward has fled the scene.

According to the Press-Enterprise, 64-year old Perris resident Steve Baxter was found badly injured near the intersection of Goetz Road and Ellis Avenue in Perris around 11:16 Friday night.

He died at the scene five minutes later.

The Riverside County Coroner places the exact location as Goetz Road, 531 ft south of Cai Court.

Authorities are looking for an older white or light colored sedan with major front-end damage and a shattered front windshield, make and model unknown.

Authorities asked anyone with information is urged to call Riverside County  sheriff’s deputies at 951/210-1068.

This is at least the 33rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth that I’m aware of in Riverside County; it’s also the sixth in the county since mid-June, which suggests a serious problem.

Simply put, there is no excuse for failing to have the basic human decency to stop your damn car, and leaving another human being to die alone in the street. Ever.

Period.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Steve Baxter and all his loved ones. 

Hit-and-run driver arrested after man killed in Huntington Beach; second OC bike death in three days

Not again.

Another bike rider has died on the streets of Orange County. And another driver has fled the scene.

But at least this time, the driver was arrested.

According to the Daily Pilot, a man was riding his bike near the corner of Beach Blvd and Sunrise Drive when he was stuck by a driver around 12:25 am last night.

The victim, who hasn’t been publicly identified, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver was later found by police and booked on suspicion of felony hit-and-run. No identification was provided on the suspect, either.

Unfortunately, no other information is available at this time, including how or where the crash occurred.

Anyone with information is asked to contact traffic investigator Doug Demetre at (714) 536-5670.

This is at least the 32nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the ninth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

It’s also the second bicycling death in the county in just the past three days, and the fifth SoCal bike rider killed in the last week.

My deepest sympathy and prayer for the victim and all his loved ones.

Update: Bike rider killed in Irvine crash Saturday morning; victim identified as 26-year old Irvine woman

The bloodshed continued on Southern California streets, as yet another person was killed riding a bicycle, this time in Irvine.

According to the Orange County Register, the victim, who hasn’t been publicly identified, was struck by a motorist somewhere near the offramp to the 405 Freeway at Jeffrey Road around 9:43 am Saturday.

Which makes it the fourth fatal SoCal bike crash in just the last five days.

The victim apparently died at the scene, with the coroner called 43 minutes after the crash.

There’s no description yet on the victim, or just how or where the crash happened. Although it appears to have been near the northbound offramp, since Jeffrey changes names south of the 405.

Meanwhile, someone was transported to the hospital with a leg injury. But again, there’s no word on whether that person was in the car, or if the driver may have struck someone else, as well.

Hopefully, we’ll learn more soon.

This is at least the 31st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

That follows the deaths of people riding bicycles in Monterey Park, Riverside and Desert Hot Springs since last Tuesday.

Update: The Orange County Coroner has identified the victim as 26-year old Irvine resident Barbora Kabatova

Even though the coroner was called to the scene, Kabatova actually died Mission Hospital Regional Medical Center in Mission Viejo nearly 30 minutes after the crash.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Barbora Kabatova and all her loved ones.

Thanks to Bill Sellin for the heads-up.

Update: Man killed riding bike in Desert Hot Springs hit-and-run; 5th Riverside County bike death in 30 days

Please make it stop.

Just one day after reporting on two bicycling deaths in Southern California, another man was killed riding in Desert Hot Springs sometime overnight.

And no, the coward behind the wheel didn’t bother to stick around. Or even call for help.

According to the Desert Sun, the victim was found lying next to his mangled bicycle around 5:45 this morning on Two Bunch Palms Trail near Cholla Drive in Desert Hot Springs. However, police were unsure on exactly when or where the crash occurred.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

There’s no description yet of the suspect or the vehicle. There’s also no word on whether the victim had lights on his bike, or what kind of bike he was riding.

He was found lying in the eastbound lane on the lightly traveled road, leading a bicyclist passing by the crash scene to note that drivers can be blinded by the rising sun, which came up at 5:42 this morning — about the time his body was discovered.

With little traffic at that early hour, it’s likely the driver could have easily exceeded the posted 45 mph speed limit on the straight, unbroken roadway.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Palm Desert Police Officer Chris James at 760/329-2904, ext. 351, or the PDPD watch commander at 760/329-2904, ext. 302.

This is at least the 30th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

It’s also the fifth bicycling death in the county in the past 30 days.

Update: The Desert Sun has updated their story to indicate the victim was a 43-year old man, though he still hasn’t been publicly identified. 

Police are looking for a maroon 2006-2009 Lexus IS250 sedan, last seen heading west on Two Bunch Palms Trail. Which would suggest that driver was headed away from the rising sun, not towards it. 

Investigators determined that the victim was riding in the middle of the roadway, though they don’t know which way he was going. 

Presumably, they mean in the middle of the lane, rather than down the center line. However, with no shoulder on either side, there’s nowhere else to ride without hugging the edge of the road. 

It’s also important to note that it can be difficult, if not impossible, to determine the exact point of impact in bicycle collisions; police often rely on where the victim’s body and bicycle landed, which can have little or no relation to where they were hit. 

Update 2: The victim has been identified as 43-year old Palm Springs resident Christopher Jones. Police now place the time of the crash as around 5:30 am.

Update 3: Police arrested 31-year old Yesenia Bibriesca of Desert Hot Springs on suspicion of felony hit-and-run, after finding the Lexus believed to have been used in the crime. 

She’s been released on $75,000 bail. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the Christopher Jones and his loved ones.

Thanks to Victor Bale and Phillip Young for the heads-up.

Riverside bike rider killed in collision with motorcyclist Monday night; 4th Riverside county bike death in 30 days

More bad news today.

According to My News LA, a bike rider was killed in a collision with a motorcyclist in Riverside Monday night.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was attempting to cross Magnolia Ave just east of Jackson Street around 10:25 pm when he allegedly rode directly out in front of a man riding west on a Harley.

He was killed instantly.

The motorcyclist and his passenger were taken to a hospital with unspecified injuries.

A police sergeant appeared to blame the crash on a lack of crosswalks in the area. Yet a street view clearly shows the intersection of Magnolia and Jackson controlled by a traffic signal, with a crosswalk in every direction, suggesting the crash may have been significantly east of Jackson.

Magnolia is a four lane divided street in a residential neighborhood, with bike lanes and a wide planted median, and a 40 mph speed limit.

The question is why the victim would ride out in front of such a loud motorcycle, even if he or she didn’t see it.

It’s possible they were under the influence or distracted in some way, or that the 54-year old motorcyclist may have been traveling at a high rate of speed.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Riverside Police Department’s Traffic Bureau at 951/826-8720.

This is at least the 29th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

It’s also the fourth bicycling death in the county in the past 30 days.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his or her loved ones.

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