One of the two men sought for questioning in the deaths of two brothers in a hit-and-run collision in Highland Park turned himself in and was later released, police said Thursday evening.
Alejandro Nuno Coronado surrendered to police within two hours of being identified as one of the two persons of interest in the case, according to Officer Mike Lopez of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Media Relations Division.
“Coronado submitted to an interview with investigators, denied involvement in the crash and was allowed to leave,” Lopez said.
Coronado, 25, of Highland Park, and Christian Mario Camarena Ramirez, 24, of Van Nuys, were named as persons of interest, according to the Los Angeles Police Department’s Central Traffic Division. Ramirez remains at-large.
Investigators believe both were in the suspect vehicle, although they are unclear on who was driving, according to Central Traffic Division Detective Juan Campos.
The fatal collision, which occurred about 1:15 a.m. Sunday at the intersection of San Pascual Avenue and Pollard Street, took the lives of Benigno Felix, 25, and Jesse Felix, 19.
The brothers were in a 2017 Ford Fusion that was traveling east on Pollard Street and were making a right turn onto northbound San Pascual Avenue when their vehicle was struck by a speeding 2018 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck, according to the LAPD.
Witnesses told police the Silverado reached speeds up to 80 mph before it struck the driver’s side of the sedan.
The Fusion was pushed 120 feet before the Silverado veered to the right and struck at least one parked vehicle that was pushed onto a sidewalk and into a wrought iron fence, police said.
“The male Hispanic driver and a male Hispanic passenger exited the Silverado and they fled on foot northbound on San Pascual Avenue to eastbound on Hough Street,” according to a police statement.
Firefighters responded, but the brothers were pronounced dead at the scene.
They had tried to get through a balky motorized gate into the parking area of an apartment complex, but when it didn’t open they drove around the block looking for a parking spot, and that’s when the crash occurred, according to CBS2.
Detectives contacted the owners of the truck, who said various members of the family use the vehicle.
Jesse Felix was a student at Cal State Los Angeles, his older brother a college graduate, CBS2 reported.
The track program at Highland Park’s Franklin High School, where Jesse Felix was a runner, tweeted:
“It’s with a heavy heart that we report that one of our former Panther track athletes passed away in a horrible hit and run car crash last night here in Highland Park. Jesse Felix Zuniga will be missed by his family, friends and the Panther community.”
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Ramirez and Coronado was urged to call Central Traffic Division Detective Juan Campos at 213-833-3713 or email him at email@example.com. After hours, information can be submitted to the watch commander at 213-833-3746 or by calling 877-LAPD-24-7.
Anonymous tips may be submitted through Crime Stoppers by calling 800-222-TIPS or at lacrimestoppers.org.
The LAPD offers rewards of up to $50,000 for information leading to arrests and convictions in hit-and-run cases.