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Couple walked hand-in-hand before killed

July 14, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A police pursuit ended in tragedy after a young man and woman were killed by an alleged drunken driver in Hollywood at about 8:45 p.m. Sunday. The incident began when LAPD officers attempted to pull over a vehicle that was allegedly swerving.

Click in the Eyewitness News Story Window above to watch Robert Holguin's report.

The pursuit went on for a few blocks before the driver, identified as 29-year-old Sergio Delgado, blew through a red light just west of Hollywood and Vine, running over a couple crossing the street -- reportedly hand-in-hand as they crossed. The couple died at the scene.

"It was like a big explosion. Everybody's kind of dumbfounded, man. You know, you see two bodies flying in the air," said Steven Herrall, a witness.

Delgado tried to flee the scene, but witnesses said bystanders held on to him until police could take him into custody.

"He tried to keep going. We caught him right here. He was trying to keep going, he was so drunk, and his vehicle was kind of messed up, and he didn't know what to do," said Dominique Eastman, a witness.

Delgado is in custody, and is being held on $2 million bail. Authorities have not said what Delgado's city of residence is, but he has been convicted of DUI once before, and he was allegedly driving under the influence Sunday night.

Hollywood Boulevard was shut down early Monday morning between Cahuenga and Schrader Boulevards until about 7 a.m.

Officers said it's a tough decision making the call to initiate a pursuit, especially with pedestrians close by, but they said because the suspect was driving so recklessly, they continued their effort to get him to stop.

"There's so many factors that the officers have to consider when they decide to engage or initiate a vehicle pursuit," said LAPD Sgt. Ruby Malachi.

The two victims, a male and female Hispanic in their late 20's, died at the scene. Detectives are asking for the public's help in identifying the pair, who did not have any identification on them. The female victim was wearing a turquoise blue top, beige shorts, and blue sandals. The male victim was wearing a white T-shirt with "Welcome to Hollywood" printed on the front, olive green pants, and black work boots.

Delgado was booked for murder and is being held on $1 million bail. There was a passenger in Delgado's vehicle, however, he has not been identified. Detectives want to speak with him and are asking for the public's help in identifying and locating him.

Anyone with information about this crime should contact West Traffic Detective at (213) 473-0234. During off hours and weekends call the toll free Detective Tip Line at 1-877-LAWFULL. Eyewitness News reporter Lisa Hernandez contributed to this story.

 

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