COSTA MESA, Calif. (Dec. 7, 2020) – An impaired driver was arrested last night after failing to stop at a stop sign and fatally hitting 12-year-old bicyclist crossing the intersection. The passenger was also arrested on drug-related charges.
On Dec. 6, 2020, at approximately 5:55 p.m., Costa Mesa Police Department (CMPD) officers and Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue responded to a traffic collision involving a 12-year-old bicyclist and a driver in a rented, moving pick-up truck on Junipero Drive and Arlington Drive. The victim, later identified as 12-year-old Noel Bascon, was riding his bicycle with his father, who was on his own bicycle, when they entered the crosswalk. The driver in the pick-up truck, traveling east on Arlington Drive, failed to stop at the stop sign and struck the victim, throwing him several feet.
As officers arrived, a passerby was administering CPR to the victim. The officers continued CPR and administered an AED until the Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue medics arrived. The victim was transported to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The CMPD Major Accident Investigation Team (MAIT) responded to the scene and began their investigation.
The driver of the pick-up truck and his passenger remained at the scene. The driver was identified as Richard Lavelle, 59, Long Beach, and was arrested and booked on murder, driving under the influence, and a parole violation.
His passenger was identified as Lee Anna Diaz Murphy, 56, Artesia, and was arrested and booked on possession of controlled substances and possession of unlawful paraphernalia.
CMPD is asking anyone with additional information about the fatal traffic collision to contact CMPD Traffic Investigator Kha Bao at (714) 754-5264.