On the same night of what would have been Justin Lavelle’s 24th birthday, new details surrounding his death were released and they may lead to an arrest.
Lavelle died Jan. 31, 2018 after his Lyft driver demanded he exit the vehicle near the Slauson Avenue exit on the 110 Freeway. Shortly after, he was fatally struck by a hit-and-run driver.
The victim's mother, Amy Lavelle, told NBC4 that she last spoke to her son when he was left on the freeway, before he was killed.
"He was screaming hideously and saying, 'Mom, mom, I have been pepper sprayed,'" she said.
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Despite the Lyft driver, Tariq Rasseed, initially denying that allegation, California Highway Patrol officials confirmed otherwise.
"Pepper spray was involved," Roberto Gomez of the CHP said.
Since the confirmation, Rasseed has admitted to using a spray on Lavelle.
Rasseed told NBC4 in February that he asked Lavelle to exit his vehicle because he felt the West Hollywood resident put their lives in danger.
"He hold my steering and I couldn’t move an inch," driver Tariq Rasseed said. "I would have died; I didn’t have no choice left."
CHP officials said they are ready to present their investigation of Rasseed.