A hit-and-run driver may have deliberately swerved across lanes and struck 33-year-old Olivia Almalel on December 25, 2008. Almalel was crossing Reseda Boulevard at Devonshire Street in the early morning when the Northridge pedestrian accident occurred, The Los Angeles Daily News reports. Los Angeles Police Department officials say the driver, who was driving a green 1995-97 Mercury Grand Marquis, was going in the opposite lanes, but crossed over to the other side and struck Almalel from behind.
Almalel apparently suffered severe spinal cord injuries, which her family members say will leave her paralyzed for the rest of her life. Her brother, Oliver Almalel, tells police that his sister has no feeling below her waist. LAPD officials are asking anyone who has more information about this hit-and-run driver to call their Valley Traffic Division at 818-644-8027. Almalel initially described the suspect vehicle as gray or black in color, but police investigators apparently retrieved a green bumper from the scene of the accident.
This is no doubt a huge tragedy for the Almalel family. I hope LAPD apprehends this hit-and-run suspect and prosecutes him or her to the fullest extent of the law. I’d like to wish Olivia Almalel the very best for a complete recovery although I am aware, based on the nature of her injuries, that it is going to be a very long road to recovery for her. Not only is it going to be tough for her and her family, it is also going to cost them a lot of money for treatment and much-needed physical therapy to rehabilitate Almalel.
If this incident was deliberate as officials are suspecting, then this driver will be facing serious criminal charges. There is no question that the driver should be held criminally and civilly responsible for this tragic incident. I’d urge Olivia Almalel’s family to retain the services of a reputed Southern California pedestrian accident attorney who will hold the negligent parties in this case responsible for the injuries and damages they have caused. Olivia Almalel is entitled to compensation to help pay for her medical expenses, future medical costs, therapy as well as loss of current and future wages.