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Driver Sought in Fatal Santa Ana Hit-and-Run Crash

Justice Still Eludes Family of Hit-and-Run Victim

Police have identified 45-year-old Luis Eduardo Distancia as a suspect in a fatal hit-and-run accident that killed a motorcyclist, Eduardo Estrada Luevano the evening of March 17, 2017. According to a news report in The Orange County Register. The incident occurred at Standard Avenue and Walnut Street when police say Distancia, driving a white 2006 Ford Econoline van, turned in front of Luevano’s motorcycle causing the collision. Luevano was transported to a local trauma center where he died from his injuries.

Video surveillance showed the van heading north on Standard, then turning left onto Walnut in front of the motorcycle. The motorcycle hit the van’s front right fender. The driver fled the scene but was followed by a witness who jotted down the license plate and reported it to police. Officials found the van the following day, but didn’t locate Distancia. He is being described as a Hispanic man weighing 160 pounds, about 5 feet 10 inches tall with brown hair and brown eyes. Anyone with information about Distancia’s whereabouts is asked to contact police at 714-245-8214.

Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family members of Eduardo Estrada Luevano for their tragic loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

Leaving the Scene of the Crash

Based on this news report, it appears that Distancia, the driver of the Ford Econoline van, not only made a left turn in front of the motorcyclist causing the collision, but also failed to remain at the scene and assist the victim, who had suffered life threatening injuries. Under California law, leaving the scene of an injury or fatal accident is illegal.

California Vehicle Code 20001 (a) states that motorists involved in an injury or fatal crash must stop immediately at the scene, wait for authorities to arrive, exchange pertinent information with other parties involved, and most importantly, try to get assistance for the injured victims. This assistance provided could be something as simple as calling 911 so the injured victim gets prompt medical attention. In such situations, it could make the difference between life and death.

Justice for Victims’ Families

In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, families of deceased victims can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering and loss of love and companionship. An experienced Orange County car accident lawyer can help victims’ families assess their legal rights and options. A knowledgeable attorney can also advise these families regarding how their own auto insurance policy might apply to a hit-and-run case where the driver is not found.

It is important you contact a Los Angeles Car Accident Attorney if you have been involved in a car accident in the LA area, and time is crucial when involving a hit-and-run case.


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California Personal Injury Blog