HAWTHORNE (CBSLA) — A suspected hit-and-run driver remained in custody Sunday, accused of killing a pregnant woman in Hawthorne.
The crash unfolded just before 2 a.m. Sunday as two ftiends — a man and the woman — were attempting to cross Prairie Avenue at 109th Street.
It was there that investigators say the pair was struck. The male victim — now identified as Tray Thomas — was taken to the hospital in stable condition. He has broken bones but is expected to be okay.
The female — identified as 40-year-old Roxanne Lynn Stempien of Hawthorne — was declared dead at the scene.
CBS2/KCAL9 confirmed the victim was four-and-one-half months pregnant.
As police were on the scene investigating, another driver barreled through the closure of the street, and slammed into a police car.
No one was injured in the second crash. Police initially detained the driver and the passenger, but released both after determining that it was an accident.
Stempien had a son and friends told CBS2/KCAL9 reporter Joy Benedict she was thrilled to be pregnant again.
The suspect has been identified as 42-year-old Richard Marlin Merritt. He was arrested on a felony DUI charge as well as felony hit-and-run.