At least eight bikers and walkers have been struck by motorists fleeing the scene since January in Orange County — four times as many as last year during the same time frame.
The top two reasons for racing away from an accident, Montes said, are driver impairment or lack of a valid license.
“Why make the situation worse?” she said of motorists who keep going. “We’re getting better at catching people.”
Investigators, Montes said, often obtain photos or video of the collision either through someone using their smart phone or a surveillance camera mounted by a business or at an intersection.
“People need to stop,” she said, “because they are going to get caught.”
Fleeing the scene is a felony, Montes said.
So far this year, there was one hit and run reported in January, two in February, five in March and one in April. Five of the eight accidents occurred at night, between 8:30 p.m. and 10:40 p.m.
Rasheed Wiggins was killed the night of April 16 at the intersection of Universal Boulevard and Destination Parkway. Wiggins, according to FHP and media reports, was in the grass median — apparently waiting for a break in the traffic — when a car struck and knocked him onto the road. Two more cars hit him as well, although the third stopped and tried to help.
FHP is offering $7500 for information leading to the arrest of two drivers.