Richard Urzua, 54, was severely injured in a Los Angeles hit and run crash, leaving him in a coma. According to a KTLA news report, Urzua was on his way to buy food and medicine for his parents when he was hit while crossing the intersection of Long Beach Boulevard and Indiana Street the afternoon of Sept. 13. The driver fled the scene without stopping to provide the necessary help.
Major Injuries Sustained
Urzua’s parents are recovering after surviving COVID-19. His family says he is the oldest of eight siblings and was caring for their parents. Now, he has been hospitalized in a coma, with serious brain damage, connected to an artificial respiration system. South Gate Police Department has released a photo of the suspect’s vehicle, which is a black Chrysler 300 with tinted windows. Because of the collision, the car has a visible bump on the driver’s side. Police are asking anyone with information to contact them at 323-563-5436. The investigation is ongoing.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Urzua’s family. It is clear from news reports that the road to his recovery may be a long one. We hope he pulls through and makes a complete recovery.
Laws and Liability Issues
Leaving the scene of an injury or fatal collision is illegal under California law. California Vehicle Code 20001 (a) states: “The driver of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to a person, other than himself or herself, or in the death of a person shall immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident.”
Hit-and-run victims are often left with mounting medical expenses, lost wages and other expenses while not being able to hold the at-fault driver accountable. In such cases, injured victims or their families would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorney who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that their legal rights and best interests are protected. At-fault motorists can be held liable for injuries and damages caused.
However, when the hit-and-run driver hasn’t been apprehended or identified, victims may still be able to seek compensation through the uninsured motorist clause of their auto insurance policies. A knowledgeable car accident lawyer can help victims or families better understand how their own auto insurance policy might apply to a hit-and-run crash where the driver has not been identified or in a case where the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured.