LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com/AP) — A missing UC Berkeley student who disappeared after attending a party at a USC fraternity died after being struck by a car on a freeway early Saturday morning, authorities said Monday.
The Los Angeles Police Department said in a written statement that Eloi Vasquez, 19, has been identified as the victim of a traffic collision on March 28.
Vasquez was struck about 2:25 a.m. Saturday while on foot on the eastbound 10 Freeway near the Vermont Avenue on-ramp, authorities said. According to the California Highway Patrol, Vasquez was hit and
killed after running across freeway lanes.
Authorities said Vasquez had last been seen leaving a fraternity party near the USC campus around 1:30 a.m. after telling his friends he wanted to take a walk.
His mother said he later called a friend telling her he was lost and in trouble. When he left the party, Vasquez didn’t have his wallet, money or identification on him.
The family of Vasquez, who was a freshman on UC Berkeley’s soccer team, had offered a $100,000 reward for information.
Vasquez’s family has since been notified.
“The family is understandably very distraught and has respectfully asked for privacy,” police said in the statement.
Mark Locklear, father of Vasquez’s roommate Matthew sent a statement to CBS2, which read in part: “The Cal Soccer players, families and coaches are devastated by this news. It is impossible to make any sense of the tragedy at this time.”
“Although he was sometimes soft-spoken, Eloi always had a way of making me laugh, and he brought energy to the room every time he was with us,” Alex Mangels, a teammate of Vasquez, said during a Monday afternoon news conference.
An exam on the body is expected to be conducted Tuesday.
The CHP says they are still talking to witnesses, including the fraternity where Vasquez was.
“Our university community is heartbroken about the outcome of this tragic accident and offer our sincerest condolences to Eloi’s family and friends,” USC said in a statement. “We are still looking in to the circumstances that led to this young man’s death and will do all we can to support the authorities in their investigation.”
The driver of the vehicle who authorities suspect struck Vasquez remained at the scene and was uninjured. Authorities said no charges have been filed as of now.
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