The family of a 68-year-old grandmother who was killed by a hit-and-run driver in La Mirada last month as she walked her grandchildren home from school is asking for help finding the motorist.
Maria “Carmen” Chavarria, a mother of three and grandmother to 15, was walking two of her young grandchildren home from school Feb. 20 when the trio was hit from behind by a man driving a dark gray Toyota Camry, authorities said. The incident occurred at about 1:15 p.m., authorities said.
The suspect never stopped. Chavarria died later at a hospital, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The two children — a 7-year-old boy and 9-year-old girl — were injured but survived.
Investigators on Tuesday released video of the car, thought to be a model released between 2015 and 2017, and publicized a $5,000 reward from the city for information that leads to the driver.
“We need justice for my mom,” said Jeannette Chavarria, the mother of the two injured children “What this person has done is heartless and inhumane.”
Maria Chavarria and her two grandkids were walking along the 14800 block of Escalona Road, a two-lane residential thoroughfare without a sidewalk. In a surveillance video released by authorities Tuesday, the trio can be seen walking along the side of the road next to the curb.
Sheriff’s Capt. James Tatreau said a witness saw the man on a cellphone. The car would have damage to its passenger-side fender and headlight area, he said.
“For this person to not stop and attend to my kids, my mom, you know, it’s just horrible," Jeannette Chavarria said.
Anyone with information on the case is urged to call the Norwalk Sheriff’s Station at (562) 863-8711 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS.