Police searching for driver in fatal hit-and-run in South L.A.

Pedestrian struck by two vehicles in South L.A.; hit-and-run suspect is sought

A pedestrian was killed Saturday night in South Los Angeles after she was struck by two different motorists, one of whom fled the scene, police said.

Ruth Noemi Duarte, 41, was killed just after 8:10 p.m. in the 1600 block of West Florence Avenue, police said.

Duarte was running across West Florence Avenue, near La Salle Avenue, when she was struck by a dark Audi SUV, according to a statement from the Los Angeles Police Department.

The driver and a passenger in the vehicle stopped to offer assistance, police said. But Duarte was struck again seconds later by a speeding red or dark SUV.

The driver fled west on Florence and then north on Western Avenue, police said.

Duarte was pronounced dead at the scene. 

"She was not dead after she was hit by the Audi," said Sgt. Jeremy Duncan. "The driver and passenger did the right thing."

Duncan said investigators do not yet have any leads on the hit-and-run driver. He said detectives would likely canvas the area to look for any security cameras on the route.

"We are handling this as two separate traffic collisions," he said. "And the second one will be handled as a hit-and-run felony."

deborah.netburn@latimes.com

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