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News Release

Saturday, August 26, 2000

Media Relations

Temporarily Blinded Driver Hits Woman in Crosswalk

LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT
PRESS RELEASE
Saturday, August 26, 2000



"Temporarily Blinded Driver Hits Woman in Crosswalk"

Los Angeles - On Friday, August 25, 2000, at approximately 6:15 p.m., a fatal traffic collision occurred at the intersection of Melrose and New Hampshire Avenue. Mr. Francisco Gallegos was driving his green 1994 Mercury Cougar westbound on Melrose Avenue when the sun blinded his vision. Mr. Gallegos attempted to block the sunlight by lowering his windshield visor when he observed the silhouetted figure of a human in front of his car. Mr. Gallegos immediately applied his brakes in an attempt to stop, but collided with Mrs. Josefina Lopez, a 73 year-old female resident of the area, who was walking in the unmarked crosswalk at the above intersection.

Mr. Gallegos parked his vehicle and immediately called paramedics. However, Mrs. Lopez sustained excessive blunt force trauma and was was pronounced dead at Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital upon arrival. Following the accident, Mr. Gallegos was transported to Central Traffic Division where he was questioned and released.

This case is pending review by the City and District Attorneys.

Please refer any questions or information to Detective M. Kaden or Officer I. Rojas at Central Traffic Division's follow-up unit at 213-485-3111, or Central Traffic Division's Watch Commander at 213-485-3122.

This press release was prepared by Officer Guillermo Campos, Media Relations Section 213-485-3586.




For Release 5:00 pm PDT
August 26, 2000