Thousands of dollars are being offered up for information on the person who intentionally launched a large boulder off an overpass onto the 134 Freeway in Pasadena, killing a man driving with his family.
A $20,000 reward for information leading to an arrest or conviction in the case was unanimously approved by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, a week after the death of 23-year-old Christopher Lopez.
On March 13, Lopez was riding in the front passenger seat of a car being driven by his 21-year-old, pregnant wife, Guadalupe Gutierrez. Gutierrez's mother and the couple's 4-year-old daughter were in the back seat.
As their vehicle was in the carpool lane of the westbound 134 Freeway around 8:55 p.m., the 30-pound rock was tossed from an overpass near the Orange Grove Boulevard exit and smashed through the family's windshield.
It struck Lopez in the upper body and caused Gutierrez to temporarily lose control of the vehicle. Once she regained her composure, the 21-year-old saw what grave condition her husband was in and drove directly to Glendale Adventist Medical Center, where he succumbed to his injuries.
Investigators believe the boulder was thrown on purpose, previously saying "any prudent person would know" the damage such a large rock could cause.
California Highway Patrol detectives are now looking for bystanders who may have noticed any suspicious activity in the area of Orange Grove Boulevard and the 134 last Tuesday. Considering it is a well-trafficked part of the city, there are several people who could have helpful information, said Fifth District Supervisor Kathryn Barger, who introduced the motion for a reward.
“This is an area that I think all of us have traveled; I travel it every day," she said. "At this time of night, there’s no question, given the proximity to Old Town, that someone saw something, so I would beg you to come forward and give information so that we can find the individual or individuals who did this.”
Gutierrez issued her own plea in a press conference held last Thursday.
“We’re asking for your help," she said as her voice quivered. "If anybody saw anything, please help us find whoever did this to him. He didn’t deserve this. My daughter didn’t deserve this.”
Anyone with information can contact the CHP's Altadena Station at 626-296-8100 or 323-259-3200 after hours. Tips can also be submitted anonymously via Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.