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Bicyclist Still Unidentifed Four Days After Accident

Times Staff Writer

Four days after the accident happened, police and hospital officials are still trying to identify a young bicyclist injured by a hit-and-run driver. The young man remains unconscious and in serious but stable condition.

“I’ve been trying to get something--anything--on who this guy is,” Dan Bergman, Fountain Valley Community Hospital’s marketing director, said Tuesday. “But we haven’t come up with any information.”

The bicyclist was injured Friday evening in Santa Ana when he swerved into the eastbound lane of McFadden Avenue and was hit by a motorist, police said. The driver fled on foot and has not been identified, according to Santa Ana investigator E. Hill.

May Be Young Latino

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Paramedics took the victim to the Fountain Valley hospital’s trauma center--one of four such in Orange County--where he was treated for a skull fracture, Bergman said. The patient is believed to be a Latino and in his early 20s.

Santa Ana police regard the incident as “very common . . . . It’s run of the mill,” said Hill, explaining that the city has many hit-and-run accidents and frequently has trouble identifying victims.

Officers have traced the owner of the hit-and-run vehicle but have not yet been able to contact him, Hill said. A woman claiming to know the victim called the hospital Monday but hung up before providing concrete information, he added.

At the hospital, the case of the mystery patient has provoked concern.

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First for Hospital

“To my knowledge, this is the first time we’ve had something like this,” Bergman said. “Usually they (patients) carry some kind of identification, or a family member or a friend calls and is concerned. But not here.”

Asked who would pay the victim’s mounting hospital bills, Bergman said, “That’s one of the joys of being a trauma center. If they (patients) can pay, they pay. If they don’t, they don’t. It looks like this might be one of the situations where we won’t get compensated.”

Hospital officials said the victim is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 130 pounds. He has short black hair and was wearing jeans, tennis shoes and a white striped shirt when the accident occurred.

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