Car Charges Crowded LA Beach, Kills 1

Police have suspect in custody in Venice Beach rampage

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Aug 4, 2013 9:13 AM CDT

(Newser) – A rapidly accelerating car driven by a young man screeched across a sidewalk and straight into a crowd enjoying one of Southern California's most popular boardwalks, killing one person, injuring 11, and leaving the promenade in chaos as he sped out of sight. The victim died at a hospital a few hours after the crash last night at the Venice Beach boardwalk, an LAPD rep said. Security video shows the man parking his black car alongside the seaside boardwalk as the sun sank, surveying the idyllic scene for several minutes before getting back into the car and speeding into the crowd. It shows hundreds of people walking lazily or sitting at cafes before the black car suddenly appears and sends them scrambling wildly.

Witnesses reported a horrifying aftermath. "There (were) people kind of stumbling around, blood dripping down their legs looking confused, not knowing what had happened, people screaming," said one witness. "It was blocks and blocks of people just strewn across the sidewalk." The driver fled the scene and about an hour later, just as police were circulating word that they were seeking a black Dodge with a driver in his 20s, a man walked into a police station in neighboring Santa Monica and told officers he was involved in the boardwalk incident, said the police rep. Police are questioning the man, calling him a person of interest and attempting to determine whether he was the driver; they have found a car nearby that they believe belonged to him.

Pedestrians gather as police and fire officials respond after a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.
Pedestrians gather as police and fire officials respond after a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.   (Maarten Smitskamp)
Police and fire officials respond at the scene where a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.  At least a dozen people were injured, two of them critically, according to police.
Police and fire officials respond at the scene where a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013. At least a dozen people were...   (Alex Thompson)
In this image take from a security camera, pedestrians scatter as a car drives through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013. At least a dozen people were injured, two of them critically, according to police.
In this image take from a security camera, pedestrians scatter as a car drives through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013. At least a dozen...   ((AP Photo/Snapchat))
In this image take from a security camera, pedestrians scatter as a car drives through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.
In this image take from a security camera, pedestrians scatter as a car drives through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.   ((AP Photo/Snapchat))
Police and fire officials assist an injured pedestrian at the scene where a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.  At least a dozen people were injured, two of them critically, according to police.
Police and fire officials assist an injured pedestrian at the scene where a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013. At least...   (Alex Thompson)
Police and fire officials assist an injured pedestrian at the scene where a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013.  At least a dozen people were injured, two of them critically, according to police.
Police and fire officials assist an injured pedestrian at the scene where a car drove through a packed afternoon crowd along the Venice Beach boardwalk in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013. At least...   (Alex Thompson)
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