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Still no suspect in hit-and-run that led to cyclist's amputation

April 13, 2013|By Veronica Rocha

California Highway Patrol officials say they are nowhere closer to finding a motorist who ran down and badly injured a bicyclist near Griffith Park than they were when the hit-and-run occurred nearly two months ago.

On Feb. 17, Damian Kevitt, 36, an avid cyclist and church counselor, was hit by a minivan on Zoo Drive and dragged 600 feet under the carriage until he was dislodged on the southbound Interstate 5 onramp. Doctors were forced to amputate a portion of his right leg.

Since the hit-and-run incident, investigators have exhausted all leads and there have been no new developments in the case, despite a $25,000 reward, CHP Officer Kevin Denmon said Thursday.

“I know somebody knows something,” he said.

The motorist reportedly accelerated when he struck Kevitt as he was trying to flee the scene, inflicting significant road rash as Kevitt was dragged 600 feet.

“If you hit somebody, it’s an accident,” his mother, Michele Kirkland, said. “If you run away, it’s a crime.”

Kevitt has spent nine weeks at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, where he endured 10 operations. In addition to the leg injury and road rash, he suffered broken arms, legs, ribs, wrists, fingers and shoulders.

Doctors, Kirkland said, have made strides in trying to save Kevitt’s badly injured left foot, which for a time was at risk of being amputated.

“He is just doing amazing,” Kirkland said.

Her son has told her that he is “the lucky one” because he will move forward from the incident and have a good life. But he told her the motorist will have to live with his actions for the rest of his life.

“This person needs to come forward,” Kirkland said.

Officers are looking for any small, light-colored minivan that had had a “For Sale” sign posted in the right rear window and that may have been at the John Ferraro Soccer Complex around 11:30 a.m. on Feb. 17. The sign also had “For Sale” written in Spanish and a phone number with a 213 area code.

The motorist was described as a man between 20 and 30 years old with dark hair.

Anyone with information was encouraged to call CHP’s Altadena station at (626) 296-8100 or (323) 259-2010.

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