Hit and Run Suspects Sought in South Los Angeles

October 22, 2001

"Hit and Run Suspects Sought in South Los Angeles"
Press Conference
Wednesday, October 24, 2001
10:00 a.m.
Alsace Avenue & Adams Boulevard (Crime Location)

Los Angeles: On Friday, October 19, 2001, at approximately 7:20 p.m., Southwest Area Community Police Station and South Traffic Division police officers responded to a call of a "Hit & Run Felony" at Alsace Avenue and Adams Boulevard. The traffic collision occurred when the victim, 3-year-old Chrystal Gaeta, walked out of the laundromat where her mother and 5-year-old brother were doing the family’s laundry. For an unknown reason, Gaeta entered the roadway, and attempted to cross Alsace Avenue by herself. Gaeta’s mother, 25 year-old Ilvea Villalia, was unaware her daughter had exited the laundromat.
As Gaeta walked across the street, she was struck by a gray or silver pick-up truck travelling southbound on Alsace Avenue. According to a witness, the truck stopped momentarily before fleeing the location. In doing so, the driver failed to identify himself, render first aid, or call for emergency medical assistance. The truck was described as a late model "1500" extended cab with a possible roll-bar, and was last observed traveling eastbound on Adams Boulevard from Alsace Avenue.
Paramedics from the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to the scene, and transported the severely injured Gaeta to Cedar Sinai Hospital. Unfortunately, Gaeta succumbed to her injuries while enroute to the emergency room, and was pronounced dead.
Anyone with information regarding this incident should contact South Traffic Detectives at 323-290-6063. During off-hours, contact the South Traffic Division Watch Commander at 213-485-7336.
Photographs of Gaeta will be available during the press conference. Gaeta’s parents will also be available to speak to the media.
This media advisory was prepared by Public Information Officer Guillermo Campos, Media Relations Section 213-485-3586