South LA

Sidewalk Vendor Killed When Thief Crashes Stolen Amazon Van in South LA

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A sidewalk vendor was struck and killed when he was pinned by a stolen Amazon delivery van that crashed into a building in South Los Angeles.

Police collected evidence past sundown inside the stolen Amazon van that slammed into a building at Main & 48th streets around 2 p.m. In the path and killed instantly was a man in his 60s from San Pedro who sold random goods on the sidewalk, police said.

The suspect was identified by authorities Friday as 37-year Cristian Ramos Sanchez of Los Angeles.

The victim was identified by family members as Jose Rangel. Neighbors created a tribute in his honor at the crash site.

Jose Rangel is pictured in a photo provided by his family. Credit: Rangel Family

Fellow vendor Gustavo Reyes is one of two others injured in the crash.

“I made it out," he said.


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Police said the unsecured truck full of packages was stolen on Woodlawn Avenue. They said the driver lost control and hit several parked cars before striking the victims and the building.

LAPD Detective Juan Campos said somehow the man was able to turn on the truck and take off with it, despite it having an electronic device that opens the doors.

After the crash, the thief ran from the truck, but witnesses followed him and direction officers to his location, police said. A helicopter overhead spotted the man and also directed patrol units to the area where he was caught.

Police said Amazon recovered packages at the crash site for delivery by its other drivers.

Sanchez was booked on suspicion of felony hit and run. He was jailed on $85,000 bond and scheduled for a Feb. 22 court appearance.

It was not immediately clear whether he has an attorney.

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