Police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who they say fled the scene of a crash in Canoga Park on the morning of June 28. The crash killed 20-year-old Nelson Castaneda.
According to a KTLA news report, the two-vehicle crash occurred around 12:30 a.m. near the intersection of De Soto Avenue and Vanowen Street. LAPD officials say a black Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck was traveling south on De Soto at speeds over 80 mph when it collided with a silver Lexus sedan traveling west on Vanowen.
Canoga Park Hit-and-Run Driver Fled on Foot
The Lexus careened into a light pole following the collision. The driver of the Lexus, later identified as Castaneda, was pronounced dead at the scene. No one else was in the Lexus at the time of the crash. The pickup truck overturned as a result of the impact. Investigators believe the driver of the pickup truck, who fled the scene, was a vendor who sold kids’ toys, hats, and other items.
Witnesses said the hit-and-run driver ran southbound on De Soto. Police bloodhounds were brought in to help search for the driver, who may have suffered minor injuries in the collision. It is not clear at this time if alcohol or drugs were a factor in this fatal crash. The investigation is still ongoing.
We offer our deepest condolences to the family members of Nelson Castaneda for their tragic loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Justice for Victims’ Families
Under California law, it is illegal for motorists to leave the scene of a car accident. Under California Vehicle Code Section 20001 (a), drivers are required to stop immediately at the scene of a crash, remain at the scene, and wait for officials to arrive. Motorists are also required to exchange pertinent information with other parties and most importantly, render aid to the injured victims.
Families of hit-and-run victims would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles hit-and-run lawyer who represents injured victims and families of those who have been killed in these tragic crashes. In such cases, compensation may be available for the victims’ families from the uninsured motorist clause of their auto insurance policy. An experienced lawyer can help families understand how their own auto insurance policy might apply in a case where the hit and run driver has not been found or in a case where the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured.