Tag Archive for Los Angeles County

71-year old man killed riding bicycle in Ladera Heights; driver arrested for DUI, yet CHP blames the victim

Anyone riding a bicycle in their 70s should be applauded.

Not killed.

Yet that’s what happened in unincorporated Ladera Heights in Los Angeles County early Saturday morning, when a 71-year old man was run down by an alleged DUI driver.

So naturally, police blamed the victim.

According to a pair of nearly identical reports, the bike-riding man, who has not been publicly identified, was riding south on Alvern Street around 4:40 am when he allegedly turned right onto Centinela Ave directly in front of an oncoming driver in the right westbound lane.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Then again, on a street with a 45 mph speed limit — and a driver likely to be going faster at that hour — he had little chance of surviving the impact.

CHP investigators arrested 27-year old Culver City resident Michael Tesfai for driving under the influence.

The question is whether there were any independent witnesses who saw the crash at that hour, or whether investigators are relying on the word of the driver, who has an inherent interest in seeing his actions in the best light. And may not be the most reliable witness given Tesfai’s allegedly intoxicated state.

This is at least the 49th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 14th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

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

Update: Woman riding bicycle killed Friday in early morning Venice hit-and-run

Yet another person riding a bicycle has been murdered by a heartless coward in a motor vehicle.

This time in Venice early Friday morning.

Multiple source are reporting that a woman, who has not been publicly identified, was riding circles around the intersection of Pacific and Rose Avenues when she was run down by a driver around 3:05 am.

The driver fled north on Pacific. She was taken to a nearby hospital, where she was pronounced dead, despite the efforts of paramedics.

Police are looking for a large black SUV, possibly a Chevrolet Suburban; there’s no description of the driver.

According to the LAPD, it’s not known if drugs or alcohol may have been involved. Which goes without saying since they don’t even know who did it.

Anyone with information is urged to call the LAPD at 213/473-0236 or 213/473-0234, or toll-free at 877-LAPD-247.

As always, there is a standing $50,000 reward for any fatal hit-and-run in the City of Los Angeles.

This is at least the 43rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 13th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also at least the sixth bike death in the City of Los Angeles since the first of the year.

At last count, 16 of those people were killed by hit-and-run drivers.

Update: The victim has been identified by family members as 22-year old Prynsess Di’Amond Brazzle, who followed her faith by coming to Los Angeles to feed the hungry, only to have her life taken by a heartless hit-and-run coward.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Prynsess Di’Amond Brazzle and all her family and loved ones.

72-year old man killed riding bicycle in El Monte collision; 12th LA County bike death this year

Yet another innocent life has been sacrificed to traffic violence on the mean streets of Los Angeles County.

According to the San Gabriel Valley Tribunea man was riding his bike in the 4400 block of Peck Road in El Monte when he was run down by a southbound driver around 6:45 this morning.

The victim, identified only as a 72-year old El Monte resident, was apparently pronounced dead at the scene.

The 20-year old driver remained at the scene; police don’t suspect intoxication at that early hour. There’s no word on how or why he struck the victim, or which direction the victim was riding.

Unfortunately, that’s all the information we have right now.

This is at least the 41st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 12th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

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

 

 

Update: Man found dead in bicycle crash on Angeles Crest Highway Saturday, after apparent medical emergency

More bad news, as if we haven’t had enough already.

According to Zackary Rynew, a group of motorists came upon a bike rider lying unconscious in the roadway on Angeles Crest Highway around 8 am this morning.

Rynew later placed the crash just before the fire station on Highway 2; unfortunately, I can’t locate it on a map.

The victim was described only as a man with a mustache, who appeared to be in his 60s, and wearing an orange bicycle helmet.

Several people attempted CPR, but he was unconscious with no signs of life when paramedics arrived.

It’s not clear at this time whether he was a victim of hit-and-run, or if he died in a solo fall.

A brief report from My News LA confirms the death, placing the crash at 8:19 am at Mile Marker 27.5, though they don’t identify the victim as someone on a bicycle.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Hopefully we’ll get more details soon.

This is at least the 35th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eleventh that I’m aware of already this year in Los Angeles County.

Update: My News LA has identified the victim as 62-year old Glendale resident Steve Gerdes.

He apparently suffered some sort of medical emergency while riding his Cervelo east on Angeles Crest, and collapsed on the spot. 

Update 2: A comment from Mary Smith clarifies that all the people who discovered and attempted to revive Gerdes were motorists, and the only people who rode by on bicycles continued without stopping or offering to help. 

Something to remember when the next time someone tries to assign motorists and bicyclists into irreconcilably conflicting camps. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers Steve Gerdes and his loved ones.

Thanks to Zachary Rynew and Tim Rutt for the heads-up.

Man riding bicycle killed by LA hit-and-run driver nearly two weeks ago; no mention in news until now

Once again, someone riding a bicycle has been murdered by a heartless hit-and-run driver.

And once again, it never made the news.

According to My News LA, a man on a bicycle was run down by a driver at 2:30 am on Tuesday, June 22nd, while riding south in the west crosswalk of Melrose Ave at Normandie Ave, near LA’s Little Armenia neighborhood.

The driver kept going without stopping.

The victim, who still hasn’t been publicly identified nearly two weeks later, was taken to a local hospital, where he died sometime later.

As usual, there’s no word on why the public wasn’t informed until My News LA broke the story on Sunday.

Police are looking for the driver of a white two-door 2019-21 Camaro with a black convertible top, likely with noticeable front-end damage.

Anyone with information is urged to call LAPD West Traffic Division detectives at 213/473-0236, or call Crime Stoppers at 800/222-8477. As always, there is a standing $50,000 reward for any fatal hit-and-run in Los Angeles.

This is at least the 32nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the tenth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also at least the fifth in the City of LA.

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

Man killed 3 weeks ago in South LA hit-and-run; police belatedly announce $50,000 reward for death of Leo Dimeglio

Sadly, we don’t know much more now than we did this morning.

According to a press release from the LAPD, a man later identified as Leo Dimeglio was riding his bicycle east on Jefferson Blvd at West Blvd in South LA around 11:41 p.m on June 10th, when he was run down by a hit-and-run driver.

Dimeglio was pronounced dead at the scene; there’s no word on his age or residence.

The driver continued east on Jefferson without stopping, which suggests he or she was likely traveling in the same direction as Dimeglio prior to the crash.

Police are looking for a dark-colored SUV, most likely with heavy damage.

There was no explanation given for why the LAPD waited almost three weeks to ask for the public’s help in finding the driver, or even release word that someone had been killed on city streets.

It also makes you wonder if there are more bicycling deaths they haven’t bothered to tell us about.

Anyone with information is urged to contact LAPD South Traffic Division Detective Daniel Ramirez or Officer Andrew Guzman at 323/421-2500.

As always, there is a standing $50,000 reward for any fatal hit-and-run in the City of Los Angeles.

This is at least the 31st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the ninth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also at least the fourth in the City of LA.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Leo Dimeglio and all his loved ones. 

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up. 

Update: Cyclocross legend Laurence Malone killed Monday in head-on crash while driving near Lancaster CA

Note: This story has been rewritten to reflect details that have changed significantly since it was written Tuesday night.

More devastating news, as cyclocross legend Laurence Malone was killed in a collision near Lancaster on Monday

The tragic news was announced by the US Bicycling Hall of Fame, which said only that Lawrence was killed in a collision, leading to significant confusion and rumors.

Despite initial reports that he was riding his bike, Laurence, who was inducted into the hall four years ago, was killed in a head-on crash with a semi driver while driving his car on Highway 138 west of Lancaster.

Cyclocross Magazine had originally said Malone wasn’t carrying an ID or cellphone, and the only identification he had with him was his hall of fame badge.

However, in a detailed update to the quickly evolving story, the magazine explains that Malone’s wallet was actually hidden in the crumpled wreckage of his car.

Malone typically kept his wallet under the driver’s seat, according to Price, but kept a few meaningful momentos on his dashboard, including his letter from cycling legend George Mount welcoming him into the 2017 class for the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame.

This letter was the form of identification authorities could easily retrieve from the wreckage. They contacted the Hall of Fame, and George Mount set about trying to reach Malone’s next of kin.

Malone was the first person to win the US men’s national cyclocross title after it was revived in 1970, and just the fifth since the race began in 1963; the women’s race didn’t begin until 1975.

He went on to win the title a remarkable five consecutive times, still the record for the most wins.

Malone was reportedly on his way back from Ojai to his home in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

He is the second noted cyclist to die in two days, after master’s age group national road champ Gwen Inglis was killed by an alleged stoned driver in Lakewood, Colorado on Sunday.

Photo by Aidan Nguyen from Pexels.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Laurence Malone and all his loved ones. 

Thanks to David Huntsman for the heads-up.

Mother of five dies after she’s taken off life-support, 10 days after collision while bicycling in Lincoln Heights

Too often, we never learn what happens after someone riding a bicycle is taken to the hospital.

If we ever hear about it in the first place.

That’s what nearly happened late last month, when a woman died days after she was struck by a driver while riding her bike in Lincoln Heights.

Make that a young mother, who leaves five young kids behind.

The first clue came with a post on Nextdoor, which Michael Shifflett forwarded to me this morning.

 

Unfortunately, there was no confirmation about the crash, let alone her death. And searching the LA County coroner’s office turned up nothing.

Because they misspelled her name.

According to information Shifflett was able to gather speaking with witnesses and members of her family, 31-year old Adriana Rodriguez, otherwise known as Fishy, was hit by a driver’s car at N. San Fernando Road and Humboldt Street on April 18th.

She was hospitalized for ten days afterwards, and died April 28th after being taken off life-support.

Her death was confirmed by the coroner’s office, which mistakenly spelled her first name as Andriana, which is why I couldn’t find it.

The driver stayed at the scene following the crash. No word on whether he or she was ticketed, but no arrest was made at the scene.

Unfortunately, no other information is available at this time.

However, a poignant, slightly truncated post from one of the first people on the scene following the crash captures the needless tragedy.

A GoFundMe campaign posted before Rodriguez’ death has raised a little more than $1,100 of the low $7,000 goal at the time of this writing.

Let’s see if we can boost that a little for those kids who will now grow up without a mother.

And yes, I gave, too.

This is at least the 25th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s the third I know of in the City of LA.

It’s also a reminder that too many stories like this never make the news. And we’ll never know how many other victim of traffic violence we may not have heard about.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Adriana Rodriguez and all her family. 

Thanks to Michael Schifflett and Chris By Bike for the heads-up.

Man killed riding bicycle near center divider on the Pomona Freeway in South El Monte; 7th LA County death this year

Once again, someone has been killed riding a bicycle in the traffic lanes of a major SoCal freeway.

And once again, it doesn’t make a damn bit of sense.

According to My News LA, which apparently broke the story, a man was riding a bicycle near the center divider of the eastbound Pomona Freeway, aka the 60 Freeway, just west of Peck Road around 8:15 pm Tuesday when he was struck by several drivers.

Not surprisingly, he was pronounced dead at the scene.

A collision with one vehicle at highway speeds is not likely to be survivable, let alone multiple vehicles.

As in the other cases where bike riders have been killed while riding on a freeway, no explanation was given for what the hell he was doing there.

Just to be clear, while it is legal to ride a bicycle on some limited access highways where there is no alternative bicycle route, there are few, if any, places in the Los Angeles area where it is allowed.

And it is never smart to ride a bike to the left of the fog line, or right limit line, on any urban freeway.

This is at least the 24th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

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

Update: 67-year old Pasadena dies after losing consciousness while riding on Glendora Mountain Road

According to My News LA, someone was killed riding a bicycle on Glendora Mountain Road north of Glendora Friday.

The site reports the crash occurred shortly before noon at mile marker 12.06, according to the CHP.

Unfortunately, that’s all we know at this time.

There’s no word on whether a driver was involved, if it may have been a hit-and-run, or if the victim was killed in a solo crash.

There’s also no information about the victim.

The location along a popular riding route suggests they may have been a road cyclist; however, that is pure conjecture at this time.

Hopefully, we’ll learn more soon.

This is at least the 23rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

Update: Now we know what happened

The San Gabriel Valley Tribune has identified the victim as 67-year old Pasadena resident Stanley Swantek. 

According to the paper, Swantek was riding on Glendora Mountain Road when he lost consciousness due to an undetermined medical problem just before noon Friday. 

A passing Good Samaritan began CPR, and continued until paramedics took over. However, Swantek was declared dead less than half an hour later. 

Anyone with information is urged to call the CHP’s Baldwin Park office at 626/338-1164.

Sadly, it’s yet another reminder that cars aren’t the only danger we face on the roads. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Stanley Swantek and all his family and loved ones.

Thanks to John McBrearty, ActiveSGV and LB Acct Action Grp for the heads-up.

 

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