Suspected DUI driver hits 2 pedestrians, killing 1 in downtown L.A.

A Los Angeles man was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence after he allegedly drove the wrong way down a one-way street, struck two pedestrians and then tried to drive away from the scene in downtown L.A.

It happened around 11:40 p.m. at the intersection of South Olive Street at West 9th Street, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Police say the driver, 39-year-old John Joseph Hansen Madarang, was driving west on 9th Street, which is a one-way eastbound street.

His vehicle, a silver Lexus sedan, struck two pedestrians who were crossing in a marked crosswalk at the intersection. Both men were “catapulted” into the air and came down hard on the street, police said.

Madarang continued to drive westbound before crashing head-on with another vehicle that was waiting at a red light.

Police say Madarang then tried to ram his Lexus between a vehicle and a tractor trailer, but got stuck. He apparently tried to put the vehicle into reverse, but bystanders blocked the path with a vehicle and kept him subdued until police arrived on scene.

Both pedestrians that were hit by his vehicle were transported to the hospital. One of them, identified only as a 36-year-old man, died at the hospital. The other pedestrian was treated for serious injuries, but they were not believed to be life-threatening.

Madarang was arrested on suspicion of felony driving under the influence. He was booked into jail with bail set at $130,000.

Anyone with information about the deadly collision is urged to contact LAPD traffic Detective Juan Campos at 213-833-3713.

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