Male Bicyclist Killed in South L.A. Hit-And-Run Crash; 3 Leave Van Behind, Get Into Another Vehicle

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A man riding a bicycle was fatally struck by a hit-and-run driver in South Los Angeles Friday evening and three people were seen getting out of the suspect van and leaving the scene in another vehicle, LAPD officials said.

A van remains at the scene of a hit-and-run crash surrounded by LAPD vehicles in South Los Angeles on Jan. 12, 2018. (Credit: KTLA)
A van remains at the scene of a hit-and-run crash surrounded by LAPD vehicles in South Los Angeles on Jan. 12, 2018. (Credit: KTLA)

The crash was reported about 5 p.m. along 49th Street near the intersection with Compton Avenue, in the Central-Alameda neighborhood of South L.A., Los Angeles Police Department Officer Norma Eisenman told KTLA.

The victim was riding down westbound on 49th street when he fell off his bicycle in front of a Ford Econoline van, which then ran him over, LAPD officials at the scene said.

He was pinned beneath the van after the collision, according to a witness who asked not to be identified.

The driver of the van, described as a black woman between 20 to 30 years old, initially tried to render aid to the wounded man, but then apparently panicked and got in a white vehicle that pulled her away from the scene.

Two other men were also seen getting into the vehicle, according to Eisenman.

She left the van behind, and authorities did not have a description of the second suspect vehicle.

After that, emergency personnel arrived and “struggled” to get him out from under the large vehicle, according to the witness.

“It was a lot of people trying to help,” she said.

The man was eventually taken to Los Angeles County USC Medical Center with unknown injuries. He was later pronounced dead.

The victim has been identified as 58-year-old Thomas Demetrius Adams. Police said he lived in the neighborhood, and they think the hit-and-run driver does as well.

Police are asking the woman to turn herself in to police.

“We’re asking her if she sees this to come and report to LAPD,” said LAPD Capt. Alfonso Lopez.

KTLA’s Nidia Becerra contributed to this story. 

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