2 Detained Released; Driver Remains at Large in Deadly Long Beach Hit-and-Run: Police

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Police respond to the scene where a pedestrian was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Long Beach on May 20, 2019. (Credit: KTLA)

Police respond to the scene where a pedestrian was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Long Beach on May 20, 2019. (Credit: KTLA)

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Police are searching for the driver who killed a woman walking in Long Beach Monday night after investigators determined two people detained shortly after the crash were not involved, officials said Tuesday.

The 44-year-old Long Beach resident was the second pedestrian killed by a hit-and-run driver on Pacific Avenue in the past week, following a similar incident last Wednesday, May 15, according to Long Beach police.

The name of the woman killed Monday was not being released, pending the notification of her next of kin.

Officers who responded to the scene around 9:20 p.m. found her lying unresponsive in the northbound lanes of Pacific Avenue, just north of 25th Street, outside the Holy Innocents School, police said.

Paramedics pronounced the woman dead at the scene.

Detectives later determined she had been crossing the street outside of a crosswalk when she was first struck, then hit by additional vehicles while lying in the road. Only one those drivers returned to give a statement to police, and it was not the one who initially hit her, officials said.

Preliminary investigation led authorities to believe a 2003 Ford Explorer stopped shortly after the crash near the corner of Long Beach Boulevard and 32nd Street could have been involved, and the SUV’s two occupants were detained. But officials later determined the Explorer wasn’t involved, and the pair was released from custody.

Police have not provided a description of the vehicle that was involved.

In last Wednesday’s incident, a male pedestrian was struck along Pacific Avenue about one mile south of Monday’s scene, according to investigators.

The victim was found lying in the southbound lanes just south of 16th Street around 8:25 p.m.

The man suffered critical injuries to his upper torso and was taken to a nearby hospital, where he died the next day, police said.

Coroner’s officials have identified him as Ricky Gonzalez, 60, of Long Beach.

Gonzalez was walking across Pacific Avenue in a marked crosswalk when he was hit by a southbound vehicle that failed to yield for him, detectives said.

The driver, a woman, did pull over momentarily, but left before officers could respond, according to police.

Her car is described as a silver Volkwagen Jetta from the early 2000s. The driver was wearing a blue tank top with black leggings and sandals, officials said.

Anyone with information on either case can contact Detective Sirilo Garcia at 562-570-7355, or submit a tip anonymously via L.A. Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477 or www.lacrimestoppers.org.

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