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Los Angeles Hit-and-Run Car Accident Kills Woman

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Christina Lynn Ruvalcaba, 39, was killed and her sister Blanca Ruvalcaba, 34, was severely injured in a Los Angeles car accident, which officials report involved a hit-and-run driver. According to a City News Service article, the fatal hit-and-run collision occurred the night of December 4, 2011 on Erwin Street near Vesper Avenue in Van Nuys. Police say 33-year-old Alfonso Garnica-Mozgueda lost control of his 1995 Lexus ES300 and crashed into Christina Ruvalcaba, who was standing near the rear passenger door of her parked Chevy Silverado pickup truck. The victim’s sister was also near the rear passenger door tending to her 7-week-old daughter who was in an infant seat.

Injury and Fatality

Blanca Ruvalcaba was thrown several feet in the collision and landed on the sidewalk. Her sister, Christina, suffered severe internal injuries and died at a local hospital. Blanca Ruvalcaba suffered injuries including a broken ankle and was hospitalized, but is expected to survive. The baby was uninjured. Garnica-Mozgueda abandoned his vehicle and fled the scene on foot. However, police arrested him in his home, less than a block away from the accident site. He has been charged with murder and hit-and-run. Anyone who saw this crash is asked to contact LAPD at 818-644-8036 or make an anonymous report to 1-800-222-TIPS.

I offer my deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Christina Lynn Ruvalcaba for their devastating loss. My thoughts and prayers are also with Blanca Ruvalcaba, the mother of the infant, who has been injured. I wish her the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.

Leaving the Scene of a Crash

Based on this news report, the driver of the Lexus, Garnica-Mozgueda, not only struck and critically injured the victim, but saw what happened and fled the scene leaving two injured women and a 7-week-old infant at the scene. Unconscionable! I’m relieved that this dangerous driver was arrested right away.

Leaving the scene of a car accident is not only inhumane and irresponsible, but it is also illegal. California Vehicle Code Section 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.”

Protecting Victims’ Rights

In such cases, hit-and-run victims and their families would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles personal injury lawyer, who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that their legal rights and best interests are protected. A skilled car accident attorney will also advise victims or their families about how their own auto insurance policy applies to an incident where the at-fault motorist is uninsured or underinsured.

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