Sheriff’s recruit in grave condition; one of 25 trainees hit by car in South Whittier, coroner told
By Mike Bell •Published September 28, 2009•Updated on September 28, 2009 at 6:50 am
A recruit from the sheriff’s department who is being treated at a sheriff’s office in South Whittier after being hit by a car was one of the 25 trainees hit Tuesday night.
The 20-year-old recruit is being treated at a South Whittier hospital and has been hit on his lower left shoulder and leg, said sheriff’s Sgt. Mike Zuccaro.
The Sheriff’s Office said they were looking for the suspect who struck the recruit from the front and is now trying to get him to talk.
Zuccaro said four more recruits were on patrol Tuesday night before the car struck the trainee.
“It would be one of the worst cases of car-trainer accidents I have ever seen,” Zuccaro said.
The recruit was with the department since Nov. 18, and was preparing to graduate from the sheriff’s academy, he said.
Sheriff’s spokesman Kevin Fitch said the suspect was in a 2001 Honda Civic that was involved in a three-car accident in South Whittier at approximately 12:10 a.m.
“We were aware of the accident,” Fitch said. “We do have an active investigation that would include the investigation of that accident and the use of police vehicles to locate the suspect for questioning.”
The department said it would dispatch more police officers after the incident.
Witnesses to the crash gave deputies a description of the suspect who might have been driving the car.
“There was a woman who said the driver had brown hair, about 5′-10 or 5′-11,” Fitch said. “A couple other people said he was wearing a white T-shirt, jeans and had a beard. There was a little red mark where he hit the first car.”
Fitch said the woman who described the suspect had not seen him.
“There are two car-train accident investigations going on now,” Fitch said. “We are trying to get this one over the (