Echo Park resident awaits police response after reporting hit-and-run

An Echo Park woman was driving home on Sunset Boulevard early Monday at about 1:30 a.m. when she saw a man stumble across the traffic lanes in the middle of the block near Echo Park Avenue. But another motorist heading westbound on Sunset apparently did not see the same pedestrian. “The car hit the guy – he popped up into the air,” said the woman who pulled over and called 911.  The driver of the dark car who struck the pedestrian fled the scene but the woman stayed behind with the injured man, waving off other oncoming cars until paramedics arrived to transport the injured pedestrian to the hospital. While paramedics were quick to respond to the scene,  police have yet to conduct an investigation more than 24 hours after the hit-and-run took place.  “Is this normal?”  asked the woman.

In fact, officials with the LAPD Central Traffic Bureau said they never received a report of the hit-and-run to investigate. But the Los Angeles Fire Department did dispatch paramedics to the scene in response to a 911 call and transported an apparent traffic accident victim to County USC Hospital, said LAFD spokesman Brian Humphrey.  He did not have details about the man’s injuries. Police had not shown up to the scene by the time paramedics had left, he said.

Why does the fire department have a record of the incident but not LAPD traffic investigators? A detective with the LAPD Central Traffic Bureau is trying to find out, saying she this morning that she was going to start by checking first with the fire department.

The Echo Park woman who witnessed the accident and called 911 said police called back as she waited with the injured man, who was conscious but had suffered a gash to the head and a twisted leg.  The woman said she later called the LAPD Central Traffic Bureau and provided some details during a brief conversation with an officer who answered the phone. But it was far from an investigation.  The woman said she is eager to find out the condition of the injured man, who she described as a male Latino in his early 20s.

“I really want to know if that guy is okay,” she said.


  1. Dear Echo Park Woman, you are a rare hero in my eyes. Thank you for sticking your neck out to help a stranger.

  2. Bureaucrats who can’t be bothered with doing their job. As reported, several contacts and they blow them all off.

    Re the accident itself, though, what about the person who was hit? What does County-USC have to say about him?

    Considering it is reported that he was staggering across at midblock, was this yet another accident involving bar time drunkeness in Echo Park? I also wonder if it might be another accident involving a driver talking on a cell phone rather than paying attention. Maybe we have both things in play here.

  3. Does this mean we should do a “road diet” on Sunset, making it just one lane in each direction, and that will make the traffic flow both faster for the drivers yet also slower so the pedestrians are safe, and everyone will be safe and happy, whether driver or pedestrian, no matter how irresponsible they are?

    That’s what has been pushed seriously after other accidents.

    • Well considering there’s already a center turn lane, bike lanes, wide sidewalks, traffic signals and marked crosswalks every block on this stretch of Sunset, the traffic flow is usually pretty safe for everyone (hence the man still being alive after being hit by a car)… but I’m sure hit-and-run drivers everywhere are happy you’ve run to their defense, keep up the good work!

  4. Hope this guy’s ok, and it’s nice to hear that for every hit-and-run scumbag there’s good samaritan across the street ready to help out a fellow human being!

    I wonder why the LAPD sends 6 sedans and a helicopter when there’s loud parties at the Mime, but they can’t even follow up on this incident… must’ve been a busy night. Not very comforting.

  5. Sounds like the purported lack of police response to this crime might have resulted from resources being devoted to investigating the murder reported nearby?

    • I very much doubt that. Central Traffic doesn’t respond to murders. Robbery-Homicide responds, with support form the local station, not Central Traffic.

  6. sounds like he was an illegal….

  7. Regardless of whether or not the pedestrian was being irresponsible, hit and run is illegal PERIOD. The fact that the driver left the scene at 1:30am suggests that he/she was probably intoxicated, or had some other reason to avoid law enforcement.

    I called the cops once after witnessing a hit and run where the person said they were fine and left , and they said they couldn’t do anything unless the victim filed a report. Since it was right in front of my house and looked intentional I really wanted them to take action, and I even had the guy’s side mirror with a serial number. Frustrating.

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