Mother of Pedestrian Killed in Hit-and-Run Last Year Sues City of Long Beach

The mother of a pedestrian killed last year in a hit-and-run accident on Spring Street near El Dorado East Regional Park is suing the City of Long Beach, filing a wrongful death suit in Los Angeles Superior Court yesterday.

The woman, 43-year-old Rosa Gomez, alleges the city knew the area was risky for pedestrians and did not take steps to prevent accidents like the one that resulted in the death of her son, 20-year-old Daniel Gomez.

A representative from the Long Beach City Attorney’s Office did not respond with comments at the time of publication.

Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) officers arrived at Spring Street and Studebaker Road at about 12:11AM to find an unconscious man lying in the street 115 feet past the initial area of impact on September 13, 2014.

Long Beach Fire Department (LBFD) personnel transported Gomez to a local hospital where he had succumbed to major injuries and was pronounced dead, the Post previously reported.

A preliminary investigation found that the man was walking across Spring Street outside of a crosswalk when he was struck by a silver Honda traveling west on Spring. After crashing into the victim, the vehicle left over 107 feet of locked-wheel skids before fleeing the scene, according to the LBPD.

The lawsuit alleges the City of Long Beach had designed Spring Street as a major arterial street before El Dorado Park was established, and should have built fences along Spring Street at Karen Avenue to deter pedestrians from crossing the street at that dangerous location as they sought access to the park’s bicycle and pedestrian paths.

According to the lawsuit, previous deaths in the area had also prompted residents to ask the city council to install barriers or a traffic signal at the crosswalk to prevent further deaths.

“The city of Long Beach chose not to erect any fence or foliage prohibiting ingress or egress on Spring Street,” the suit states. “In essence, the city of Long Beach had created an attractive park open to its residents with no direct access but by crossing Spring Street at Karen Avenue.”

City News Service contributed to this report. 

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