VERNON ( — A big rig driver allegedly ran a red light in Vernon early Saturday morning and crashed into a pickup truck, killing its passenger and injuring its driver, who was listed in good condition at an area hospital.

At about 3:10 a.m., the trucker ran a red light while going westbound on 37th Street and collided with the pickup truck with two men inside that was going northbound on Santa Fe Avenue, according to Vernon police Sgt. Brandon Gray.

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The Chevrolet pickup truck became lodged underneath the big rig’s trailer. The trucker then unhooked the trailer from his cab and drove away westbound on 37th Street, Gray said.

The passenger was pronounced dead at the scene and paramedics rushed the driver of the pickup to an area hospital, where he was listed in good condition with minor injuries, he said.

On Saturday evening, the coroner’s office identified the deceased as Armando Murillo, 28, of Pacoima.

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The driver in the big rig was described as a tall white male, Gray said. The trailer left behind was not reported stolen, officials said. The identity of the driver is still under investigation.

On Saturday afternoon, police named Guillermo Ortiz Jr. as “a person of interest” in the accident.

person of interest

Credit: Vernon Police Department

Vernon Police asked anyone who saw the crash or who may know of the person of interest’s whereabouts to call them at (323) 587-5171.

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