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News Release

Thursday, November 3, 2005

Media Relations

$50,000 Reward Offered for Hit and Run Driver

Los Angeles: The investigation of the hit-and-run death of 76-year-old Henry Choi, October 12, 2005, received a boost today when Councilman Tom LaBonge's motion passed to offer a $50,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction the driver, whose car killed Choi.

The fatal traffic collision occurred in the early morning hours at the intersection of Vermont Avenue and 5th Street in Koreatown.  Choi, a local resident of Koreatown, was walking across Vermont Avenue when he was struck by a silver 1993 Mercury Topaz.  The driver left the scene.

A man was originally arrested when he returned to the scene, but he was later released when there was not enough evidence to put him behind the wheel.

"We believe there are one or more persons out there who can help us identify the driver," said Detective Michael Kaden of the Central Traffic Division.  "In particular, we are hoping for a Hispanic man to come forward who had direct contact with the driver.  The reward may be the incentive for this person to come forward."

Mr. Choi died from extensive blunt force trauma injuries at University of Southern California Medical Center.

Local Spanish-language media outlets are encouraged to release this reward offer.  A Spanish speaking officer is available for interview by contacting Detective Michael Kaden at Central Traffic Division.

For further information please contact Detectives M. Kaden or J. Mapson, Central Traffic Division,  at 213-972-1825.  On weekends or during off-hours, the public can call the toll-free, 24-hour anonymous tip line at 1-877-LAWFULL (1-877-529-3855).