The victim was crossing in a Santa Ana crosswalk Friday night in a wheelchair when he was struck by a vehicle and left in the road.
"The pedestrian was initially found to have a faint pulse and shallow breathing before all signs of life ceased," authorities said in a news release.
He was transported to a local hospital where he was described as being in "extremely critical condition."
The suspect fled the scene in a vehicle described only as a black or dark-colored Toyota Camry that had extensive damage to its front end.
The next morning, a member of the community alerted police to a suspicious vehicle parked in a neighborhood that might be related to the hit-and-run.
Detectives examined the vehicle and determined it had been involved in the incident.
They arrested Lucio Luna, 48, of Santa Ana and booked him in jail on charges of felony hit and run DUI.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Santa Ana Police Department's Traffic Division at (714) 245-8200 or Investigator N. Quinones at (714) 245-8284.