Woman left in coma after suspects fleeing police slam into her car in South LA, daughter says

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Thursday, February 23, 2023
Innocent woman in coma after crash at end of South LA police chase
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The daughter of an innocent woman struck by a suspect's vehicle during a police chase in South Los Angeles says her mother is in a coma but expected to wake up and survive.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The daughter of an innocent woman struck by a suspect's vehicle during a police chase in South Los Angeles is speaking out about her mother's condition.

Julisa Mercado Reyna, the victim's daughter, said doctors told her that her mother was in an induced coma and there was a 90% chance she would not survive.

On Feb. 16, LAPD initiated a pursuit that lasted a little over a minute, ending when the suspect ran a red light at the intersection of Gage and San Pedro Street, and slammed into Yolanda Reyna's sedan.

The suspect and his passenger, described as men in their 30s or 40s, exited the truck and ran from officers a short distance before being taken into custody.

"I've driven with her when there's sirens around and she would've stopped immediately. She would've stopped," said Julisa Mercado Reyna.

She said her mother was on her way to a concert with a friend when the crash happened.

"Just an hour before the incident and she was just like, 'Yeah, I'm going to go, I'm young,' She's 42, mind you, she's very young so she was just happy to go," Julisa said.

Yolanda is a single mother of three to her children Julisa, Caesar and Anthony

"I'm angry and most of all I'm just sad 'cause it's like losing my best friend. Obviously, that's my mother and I never had a father figure in my life, so just not having her around, not having her to talk to is pretty sad," said Julisa.

Yolanda is described as a free spirit and always looking to help others.

"She was always down to go hiking, she likes to go take dance classes," her daughter said. "She's a devoted soccer mom."

The family set up a GoFundMe page to help with the cost of medical expenses.

Editor's note: In an interview with ABC7, Julisa Mercado Reyna initially said she had been told there was a 90% chance that her mother would survive. The victim's daughter later clarified her remarks. This article has been updated to reflect the change.