Bus Driver Arrested for Murder

August 18, 2002

Los Angeles: On August 17, 2002, at approximately 6:30 p.m., uniformed patrol officers from Wilshire Division came upon a scene of what they believed was a fatal traffic accident involving an MTA bus at Wilshire Boulevard and Wilton Place.
The officers observed a man lying on the street after being struck by the bus. Los Angeles Fire Department paramedics responded to the scene and transported the victim to Cedar Sinai Medical Center, where he died as the result of his injuries at 7:59 p.m.
The investigation revealed that the victim attempted to flag the bus down as it left the bus stop. The bus driver, who had experienced prior negative contact with the victim, refused to stop for him. The victim ran in front of the bus, grabbing onto the bicycle rack affixed to the front of the bus. The man then fell under the bus and was run over.
The driver of the bus, identified as Cruz Vaca, 29 years of age, was booked for murder. His bail is set at $1,000,000.
The victim is described only as a male Black. His identity will be released by the Coroner’s Office.
Wilshire Homicide Detectives assumed responsibility for the investigation under the direction of Lieutenant Stan Ludwig, Officer in Charge, Wilshire Detectives Section. Anyone with information that may assist in this investigation is urged to contact Wilshire Detective Section at 213 485-4033. On weekends and during off-hours, call the 24-hour toll free number at Detective Information Desk, 1 877 LAWFULL.
This press release was prepared by Public Information Officer Eduardo Funes, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.