Police identify 5-year-old fatally struck by hit-and-run driver in Gardena


GARDENA, Calif. (KABC) — The search continues for the driver who killed a young child in a hit-and-run crash over the weekend in Gardena.

Police say the driver crashed into 5-year-old Patrick Mateo Chacon and his grandmother Sunday as they walked in the crosswalk on Marine Avenue and Budlong Avenue. That driver then took off.

“You didn’t even have sympathy. Doesn’t matter who it was or what it was, you should’ve stopped. You really should’ve stopped,” said Anesa Boone, an area resident.

The incident happened at 10:30 a.m., according to authorities. They describe the vehicle involved in the hit-and-run as a mid-sized dark-colored SUV.

The grandmother was rushed to the hospital and is in stable condition, according to police. Patrick died from his injuries.

Investigators say that speed does not appear to be a factor in this crash. Local residents, however, say speeding through red lights in the area is all too common.

“Not too long ago there was a car that reamed off the corner and hit that fence and reamed off the house to the corner over there. So this is a dangerous intersection here,” said Ruben Rivera.

“We need to more stops between Marine and Normandie,” said Sylvia Quintana, who lives near the intersection where the fatal crash occurred. “Every six months it’s a car accident.”

Flowers and candles were placed at the crash site.

An elementary school is just a few blocks away from the intersection and sees children crossing the street in this area daily. Residents are asking city leaders to make a change.

“I really think they need to add something here. Some speed bumps or something because throughout this whole street, there’s nothing,” said Boone.

Investigators say they have some positive leads but they are still searching for the driver that fled the scene. Anyone with information regarding this case is urged to contact Investigator Jose Zamudio with the Gardena Police Department at (310) 217-6189 or Sgt. Daniel Guzzo at (310) 217-6122.

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About the Author

Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.





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