Southern California breaking news and trends

Hit-and-run driver in Marina Del Rey causes police car to crash, injuring two officers


A hit-and-run driver caused this patrol car to crash in Marina Del Rey on Monday, May 28, 2012.

Two officers patrolling Marina Del Rey were sent to the hospital early Monday after another driver clipped their cruiser -- sending it veering out of control and slamming into bus stop benches -- before fleeing the scene.

The hit-and-run happened around 2 a.m. this morning near the intersection of Washington Boulevard and Pacific Avenue, only a block from the water. According to witnesses, the SUV cut off the police cruiser, causing the crash. NBC says the officers were treated and released.

The cruiser hit the benches head-on, causing extensive damage to the vehicle’s front end. No one else was hurt in the crash.

Police have not yet released a description of the SUV or its driver.

Anyone who thinks they may have information on the incident is asked to call LAPD’s Pacific Division at (310) 202-4579.


$50,000 reward offered in double hit-and-run that killed Pacoima woman as she walked to church


Council member Richard Alarcón introduced a measure to offer a $50,000 reward for information on a 79-year-old Pacoima woman's hit-and-run death.

City leaders have given up just asking, and are now offering $50,000 in reward money for information on two separate drivers who struck and killed an elderly woman walking to church in Pacoima, then fled the scene.

The double hit-and-run happened at about 6:30 a.m. on March 17, as 79-year-old Virginia Ramirez tried to cross Glenoaks Boulevard near Mercer Street on her way to Mary Immaculate Catholic Church, according to the Daily News. Ramirez died from her injuries.

(Ramirez was either a good walker or was going to catch a bus, as that intersection is two miles from the church located at 10390 Remick Ave.)

According to police, Ramirez was first hit by a 2000 Nissan Frontier driven by a 35- to 45-year-old Hispanic man, who actually got out of his vehicle to look at the victim, then got back in and sped away.


Driver smashes into high-end auto shop and flees, leaving injured passenger behind


A TVR Tuscan and a yellow Ferrari are seen damaged inside Specialty Craft Car on South La Cienega Boulevard.

A woman was critically injured and left for dead early this morning after the man driving the car she was in smashed into a luxury auto shop on La Cienega Boulevard, causing major damage to exotic sports cars and to the passenger in his own car, then fled the scene on foot.

Police were still looking for the driver in this bizarre hit-and-run incident that happened at about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday at Specialty Craft Car, located at 1862 South La Cienega Blvd. The L.A. Times reports that authorities believe the driver of the vehicle, a Lincoln Town Car, ran from the scene of destruction, leaving behind a woman in her 30s.

The woman’s condition was not immediately available. According to KNBC the Town Car she rode in appeared to be part of a limo or taxi service.

The vehicle was left a wreck against the wall of the shop, partly pushed through a shattered sheet-glass window fronting the business. Inside, a Ferrari F430 Spider and a TVR Tuscan S were damaged. The Times report also said a Lamborghini was damaged.


Police: Grandmother hit great-grandmother with her car while abducting 3-year-old child

Crime Stock Photo (police caution tape)

Picture Perfect Pose/

A grandmother and a great-grandmother had a fight over their 3-year-old kin in Fountain Valley last week, culminating with the grandmother hitting the great-grandmother with her car as she drove off with the child, according to reports.

Georgina Garcia, 44, turned herself in to police on Friday following the Thursday night incident, the Orange County Register reports.

According to the Register, police believe Grandma Garcia confronted the great-grandmother, who has custody over the 3-year-old girl, at a residence on the 17300 block of San Luis Street in Fountain Valley. The two women argued, and Garcia allegedly snatched the girl out of the elder woman’s arms, then made to drive off.

But the great-grandmother got in the way of the vehicle and was struck, police said. She suffered minor injuries and was treated and released from a nearby hospital.


Actress helping injured animal in Griffith Park struck by two vehicles, killed

Dancer and actress Zina Freeley, known professionally as Zina Bethune, was killed in a possible hit-and-run accident early Sunday morning in Griffith Park.

The 66-year-old was struck by two vehicles on Forest Lawn Drive as she stopped to help an animal in distress.

Bethune reportedly parked her Lincoln Town Car on the side of the road and was approaching the animal when she was struck first by an eastbound vehicle, and thrown into the westbound lane where she was struck again, and dragged more than 600 ft. underneath the second car. 

Authorities are searching for a vehicle that may have fled the scene.

A number of news outlets are reporting the accident as a hit-and-run, however the L.A. Times is saying that may not be the case according to Sgt. Jeffrey Siggers of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Central Traffic Division.