Los Angeles

Spike in Deadly Hit-and-Runs in LA Leaves Families Devastated

Incidents where someone ends up dying are up 12% percent over last year.

NBC Universal, Inc.

Trinidad rosas brought an elaborate floral cross ...to this small shrine on the sidewalk near Whittier and Esperanza in Boyle Heights.

Then, she tidied up a bit, making sure the candles were still lit and the other bouquets were upright.

On the lamppost nearby: her cousin, Francisco Rosas looked down from a small photo.

"He was a good man and a hard worker," she told us, as tears filled her eyes.

He was looking forward to a trip soon, back to Mexico to visit his kids,” Trinidad Rosas said. 

But Saturday, around 10 p.m., someone in a ford fusion hit Francisco hard in the crosswalk here, as he attempted to cross the street.

The impact threw him thirty feet, leaving him right near where the flowers are.


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Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.

Just 16 miles away, earlier that same day, two other people barely escaped the same fate.

Surveillance video from West Hollywood shows the victims, two men, standing near a parked car on Sunset Boulevard at 2 a.m.

In both incidents, the drivers did not stop. They did not render aid and they did not call 911.

They left family members like Trinidad devastated by either the pain of death or the long-term effects and extreme cost of serious bodily injury.

The NBC4 I-Team has been tracking hit and run stats for the city of Los Angeles and the numbers are daunting.

Incidents where someone ends up dying are up 12% percent over last year while incidents with injuries are up five percent.

All tolled, there have been 661 "felony hit and runs" in Los Angeles, dating back to January 1, a yearly problem of epidemic proportions, which the city and county seem powerless to fix.

Trinidad last spoke to her cousin a couple of weeks ago.

He was helping the family with funeral plans for another relative who had been killed in a car accident. Now, the funeral will be for him.

And, as she noted through her tears, they don't even know who did this to him or why they decided to leave him to die alone in the street.

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