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Video: Police release surveillance footage of hit-and-run scene

October 09, 2013|By Veronica Rocha, veronica.rocha@latimes.com

This story has been updated with additional information.

Glendale police on Wednesday released surveillance video footage that showed a white utility van fleeing the scene after striking and severely injuring a 75-year-old woman last week.

The Glendale woman, Leleh Issakhanian, has remained in critical condition at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center since the Oct. 2 accident, police said.

Police say the driver of the white van struck Issakhanian about 4:22 p.m. as she exited her parked vehicle in the 1100 block of Western Avenue.

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After hitting Issakhanian, the driver reportedly fled. The driver was last seen traveling east on Glenoaks Boulevard.

Police don’t know if the van has any significant damage as a result of the collision.

To see the video, visit glendalenewspress.com.

Meanwhile, investigators were also reviewing surveillance video near the scene of the Oct. 3 hit-and-run crash that seriously injured Glendale residents Serpouhi Gharapetian and Bekzad Shahbazian, who were struck in a crosswalk at California and Central avenues.

Gharapetian, 74, remained in a medically-induced coma and on life support on Wednesday. Shahbazian, 69, is in serious condition.

The driver who struck the two friends fled in a white or light-gray compact or mid-size four-door car.

The latest accidents, including a fatal collision involving a pedestrian on Sept. 21 on Doran Street, have renewed city and police efforts to educate the residents about pedestrian and driver safety in Glendale.

“The real bottom line is that this isn’t a police department problem alone,” Police Chief Ron De Pompa said. “We can’t do it alone. We need the help of the public. We need the support of the public … to partner with us in making folks aware whether you are driving or walking in the city, that everybody has got to do their part to help address this issue and improve our traffic and pedestrian safety.”

Police officials have been enforcing road laws in neighborhoods with the most significant traffic safety problems, said De Pompa at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

“In essence, the issuing of citations — that truly changes driving behavior,” he said.

Officers plan to also conduct pedestrian sting operations, which De Pompa said police have successfully used in the past to enforce traffic safety.

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