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An elderly woman was killed when a car suspected of street racing ran through a red light and into a van taking her home from the hospital Christmas night in West Covina.

According to reports from local police on the scene, the crash took place just after 9 p.m. near Lark Ellen and Merced avenues, where a silver Mitsubishi Eclipse coupe smashed into the side of the van, knocking 90 year old Celia La Torre out of her wheelchair in the van and onto the sidewalk. She was pronounced dead at the scene by responding police.

The van’s driver, La Torre’s 72 year old son Jaime Ochoa, also suffered significant injuries to his head, having to be extracted from the vehicle by responding paramedics. He and the driver of the Eclipse, 30 year old Vincent Lopez, were rushed to USC Medical Center for immediate treatment.

Witnesses to the accident told police investigators that Lopez had been racing with another vehicle, a red Ford Escort, at the time of the crash. West Covina police were able to track down and apprehend the driver of the Escort, Victor Hugo Sanchez, early Wednesday morning in Pasadena, booking he and Lopez on suspicion of murder. The two are being held on $1 million bail.

Police are asking anyone who may have seen the two vehicles racing between 8:30 and 9:00 p.m. in the southbound lanes of Lake Ellen Avenue on Christmas night to contact the West Covina Police Department as soon as possible to assist in the investigation and bring the ordeal to a close.

If you or someone you know has been hurt in a crash like this as a result of street racing, you should seek help. Depending on the circumstances that led to your accident, you may be entitled to compensation from those at fault to help pay for the damages that you’ve sustained.

With the help of a highly trained Los Angeles car accident lawyer, you can recover the full amount that you are rightfully owed to help cover things like hospital visits, car repair payments, medical bills, and even replace wages lost from time spent away from work.

At AA Accident Attorneys, we will work to get you what you need to get you back onto your feet as quickly as possible. We have over 40 years of combined experience representing people just like you. As always, we will charge you nothing for our legal services until your case is won. Call our accident lawyers today for a free evaluation and to learn what options are available to you!

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