Video Released in Hunt for Hit-and-Run Driver Who Critically Injured Pedestrian in Florence

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Investigators released video Tuesday in their search for a hit-and-run driver who critically injured a man crossing the street in the Florence neighborhood of South Los Angeles last week.

Officials were also looking to contact relatives of the victim, who L.A. police Detective Moses Castillo identified Tuesday as Joel Cruz. A written statement from the department Monday said the victim was Jose Artega, 39.

The crash occurred around 11:30 p.m. last Friday as Cruz was crossing Central Avenue near 67th Street.

The surveillance video released Tuesday shows the victim nearly reach the other side of the street before a sedan plows into him, pushing him several feet up the road. Investigators believe the four-door car was a black or dark-blue Kia.

In the video, the driver of a second car who apparently sees Cruz’s body in the street stops for several seconds before driving away. Detectives have not said whether they’re looking for that driver as well.

As with any hit-and-run resulting in injury in the city, a $25,000 reward is tied to information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

Anyone with information can contact Detective Castillo at or 213-833-3713. Anonymous tips may be submitted via 800-222-8477 or

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