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California

Car strikes and kills man with dementia who wandered onto 101 Freeway in Thousand Oaks

101 North body found
A man’s body was found on the center median of the 101 Freeway in Thousand Oaks.
(Los Angeles Times)

A 68-year-old man who suffered from dementia was struck and killed Tuesday morning by a vehicle after he wandered onto the northbound 101 Freeway in Thousand Oaks, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The deadly incident was reported about 7:17 a.m. north of Rancho Road on the freeway, said Officer Marco Marin, a spokesman for the CHP in Moorpark. Drivers reported seeing an object wrapped in a blanket or some type of material in the center median of the freeway, he said.

When officers arrived, they found the man’s body, Marin said. His clothing made it appear that he was wrapped in a blanket, the officer said. The man’s identity has not been released.

Authorities think he may have roamed onto the freeway and tried to cross lanes.

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“The evidence we have at this time suggests that the Hispanic male was struck and killed by a passing vehicle during the early-morning hours,” he said. “Evidence from the scene suggests the vehicle that struck the Hispanic male was possibly a Toyota.”

The CHP is investigating the death as a felony hit-and-run collision, Marin said.

“Someone out there knows they struck a human being or a large object early this morning,” CHP Moorpark Cmdr. R.D. Cohan said in a statement. “Following the collision, they did nothing.  There is no evidence to suggest they returned to the scene to check on what they struck, or dialed 911.  You need to do the right thing and call us.”

Authorities closed a freeway lane as CHP officers collected evidence and waited for the coroner’s office to arrive.

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The freeway lane was closed for four hours.

Anyone with details about the collision is urged to call the CHP’s Moorpark office at (805) 553-0800.

veronica.rocha@latimes.com

Twitter: VeronicaRochaLA 

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UPDATES:

5:20 p.m.: This article was updated with the man suffering from dementia and authorities pleading for help.

This article was originally published at 9:55 a.m.


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