Bicyclist Killed in Highland Park Identified


The coroner’s office identified on saturday a bicyclist struck and killed in a hit-and-run crash in Highland Park as 33-year-old Jose Luna.

No home address was available for Luna, who was struck about 3 a.m. Friday in a marked crosswalk in the 4000 block of Figueroa Boulevard by a vehicle whose driver was later arrested.

Luna died at the scene, coroner’s Chief Craig Harvey said.

Detectives identified the suspect as 21-year-old Alexis Virto of Los Angeles. He is suspected of second-degree murder and driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and causing gross bodily injury.

Virto, who police allege was still intoxicated at the time of his arrest about five hours after the crash, was found sleeping on a bed with his girlfriend at a home about six blocks from the crash scene, police said.

He had injuries consistent with the collision and windshield debris in his hair, Detective John Menese of the LAPD’s Central Traffic Division said.

Police tracked down Virto after receiving a report of an abandoned damaged vehicle. The vehicle matched the description of the one that left the crash scene and also had the victim’s biological matter on it, police said.

Virto’s bail was set at $1 million, according to the LAPD.

A witness estimated the vehicle was traveling about 80 miles per hour at the time of impact, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Luna appeared to have been dragged a block and a half from the point of impact, Los Angeles police Sgt. Frank Gonzales said.

The suspect — who was driving a black, newer-model sedan – continued north on Figueroa after the crash, witnesses said.

“I am sickened by the deadly hit-and-run this morning in Highland Park and want to remind the media and all residents that there is a standing reward for all hit-and-run crimes in Los Angeles,” Los Angeles City Councilman Joe Buscaino said Friday.

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1 Comment

  1. Could someone please let us know what we can do to help Jose’s family with funeral expenses? This is heart breaking. I hope that creep never gets to drive again!

    My family has suffered from drunk drivers. My niece’s fiancee was hit & killed by a drunk driver. That person had multiple offences.

    One of my sisters was left disabled after being hit by a drunk driver.

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