“Two female pedestrians in a crosswalk on Bloomfield Avenue were tragically struck by a vehicle and killed at approximately 9:00 p.m. on March 12, 2021. While the two women were not carrying identification at the time and their names have not yet been officially released by the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office or Sheriff’s Department, the City of Lakewood is aware of reports that the two women were college students from China who had just finished their studies in the United States.
“The accident is still being investigated, but we can tell you this based on our briefings from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, which is the police agency in Lakewood. The driver of the vehicle was a woman in her 20s traveling with her husband, with a young child in a car seat in the back. The driver stayed on the scene and was fully cooperative with Deputy Sheriffs and gave a full interview to them. There has been one media inquiry that asserted the view that this was a hit-and-run accident. It was not.
“Another media story included an assertion that perhaps this was a hate crime against two Asian women. There is no indication at all of that. This appears to be a very tragic incident involving a family vehicle with two parents and a child that accidently collided with two pedestrians in a crosswalk at night. The Sheriff’s Department is fully investigating the matter to determine the exact causes of the accident, including the potential for distractions or other errors that may have caused the accident.
“In addition to the Sheriff’s Department investigation, the City of Lakewood is also studying the circumstances of the incident and analyzing traffic patterns and the configuration of the roadway and lighting to determine if there were any unsafe conditions or any improvements that can be made. The City greatly appreciates the expressions of sympathy and concern made by fellow residents. The City plans to report back to residents in the coming weeks as soon as our traffic analysis is complete. In the meantime, we extend our deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims, and our thoughts and prayers are with them during this tragic and sad time.”