Authorities from Orange County have made an arrest in connection with the hit-and-run accident in Huntington Beach that killed a bicyclist on the side of the Pacific Coast Highway on Friday morning.
The accident occurred at about 11:40 a.m. in the northbound lanes of the Pacific Coast Highway near Bolsa Chica State Beach, in between Seapoint Street and Warner Avenue, said Lt. Brian Seitz of the Huntington Beach Police Department.
The victim of the accident, Roger Michael Lippman, 63, of Huntington Beach was pronounced dead at the scene.
Joel Alexander Murphy, 27, of Mission Viejo, was arrested in connection with the accident after he fled the scene and arrived in Seal Beach. He was booked on suspicion of hit-and-run, driving under the influence and vehicular manslaughter which are all felonies. He was also arrested for probation violation.
According to witnesses to the accident, a silver Hyundai was speeding down the hill just north of Seapoint Street when it hit Lippman. It sustained serious passenger side windshield damage, but continued driving. The driver was later caught by Seal Beach Police after they received a call of an accident at Westminster Boulevard and Kitts Highway involving a car that matched the vehicle’s description.
Upon initial investigation, Lippman and Murphy were both traveling northbound on Pacific Coast Highway when the crash happened. However, investigators were unsure of any other details that may have caused the crash. Reports from witnesses varied and it was unclear if the motorist or the bicyclist swerved into the path of the other. Murphy did not appear to have rendered any type of aid at the scene before he fled.
The northbound lanes of the Pacific Coast Highway were closed for several hours following the crash, said traffic controllers.
The family and friends of Lippman said that he was an avid bicyclist and a friend to the community of Huntington Beach. No date has yet been set for his funeral or memorial. However, some of his friends left a white bike with pink roses on the side of road in memoriam.
Anyone who witnessed the crash is being asked to call the authorities of Huntington Beach to explain any further details that they may have.
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