Officials arrested a man accused of running over and killing another man whose vehicle he was stealing in the Westlake district of Los Angeles, police said Tuesday.
The incident was first reported as a traffic collision involving a pedestrian around 6:30 p.m. Monday evening before investigators later realized it was a carjacking, according to Sgt. Ricardo Acosta with the Los Angeles Police Department.
The violence unfolded on the rooftop level of a parking structure at 611 S. Carondolet St., where the victim's Nissan Tracker was parked, authorities said.
Witnesses told police the two men engaged in a verbal and physical altercation before the incident turned deadly. The car thief was later spotted on surveillance footage leaving the garage in the victim's truck, apparently after running him over.
The victim died at the scene after suffering severe head and body trauma, police said. The Los Angeles County coroner's office identified him as 54-year-old Ricardo Mota, from Duarte.
The Nissan truck and suspected car thief, identified as 36-year-old Mitchell Castillo, were eventually located in the San Fernando Valley around 9 p.m. using the vehicle's LoJack system, police said.
The man was arrested on suspicion of carjacking without further incident. He has several listed addresses in the Los Angeles area and appears to be a transient, officers said.
Detectives were looking into whether the attacker and victim knew each other or whether it was a random assault.
No further details were immediately available.
KTLA's Nidia Becerra contributed to this story.