A 19-year-old Laguna Niguel man was charged Tuesday with leaving the scene of a collision that killed a skateboarder in San Juan Capistrano last Friday night.
Andrew Christopher Michaels is charged with a single felony count of hit- and-run resulting in a fatality, according to Deputy District Attorney Stephen Cornwell.
There are “conflicting witness accounts” about whether Michaels had a green light when he struck 23-year-old Cesar Medina of San Juan Capistrano with a Dodge Ram pickup truck, making it difficult for prosecutors to file a vehicular manslaughter case, according to Orange County sheriff’s Lt. Jeff Hallock.
Michaels, who’s being held in lieu of $500,000 bail, could face two, three or four years in prison if convicted of the hit-and-run count, Cornwell said.
The collision happened about 10:10 p.m. Friday in a crosswalk on Del Obispo Street at Paseo Carolina, Hallock said.
Medina was riding his skateboard across the street when he was struck by the pickup truck, Hallock said. He was rushed to Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo, where his sister was working as an emergency room admittance clerk at the time, the lieutenant said.
Investigators gathered information that led them to Michaels’ residence, where he was arrested Saturday night, Hallock said, but declined to elaborate on the evidence.
Michaels was arrested on suspicion of delaying or obstructing justice and released from the Orange County Jail on Sept. 2, according to records. Hallock did not have specifics about the circumstances of that arrest.
— Wire reports