Luis Saldana, 28
Luis Saldana, a 28-year-old Latino, died Sunday, April 2, after he was shot and run over in the 12700 block of South Avalon Boulevard in South Los Angeles neighborhood of Willowbrook, according to Los Angeles County coroner's records.
Saldana was driving north on Avalon Boulevard, with his wife in the front passenger seat, when a black Honda ran into the back of their car shortly after midnight, said Los Angeles County Sheriff's Lt. Steve Jauch.
Investigators believe that the black Honda was in a race with another vehicle when the crash occurred, Jauch said.
The accident was minor, Jauch said, but almost immediately after the crash, two men got out of the Honda and began fighting with Saldana. "They were punching him, striking him with their fists," Jauch said.
Saldana's wife got out of the car to help her husband. Then a white sedan drove up next to the center median, where the men were struggling. Someone in the white car fired a gun, striking Saldana in the chest, Jauch said.
The two men who had fought with Saldana then ran back to their Honda and put the car in reverse, running over Saldana and his wife, Jauch said.
Deputies on patrol saw the car run over the couple and chased it down, arresting the two men a couple of blocks away, at South Avalon Boulevard and 124th Street, Jauch said.
Saldana and his wife were taken to a nearby hospital. She was treated for scrapes on her face and body. Saldana was pronounced dead at 1:08 a.m., according to coroner's records.
David Evans, 21, the driver of the black Honda, and Darelle Burton, 24, were arrested that morning on suspicion of murder, Jauch said. At the time, the cause of death had not been determined. "We don't know if it was the gunshot or the accident," Jauch said.
Evans and Burton were released from jail two days later, after the coroner's office determined Saldana died of multiple gunshot wounds. Investigators determined there was insufficient evidence to file murder charges against the men, according to jail records.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the sheriff's Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500. Those wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.