A driver who allegedly fled the scene of a crash that killed a passenger on a motorcycle that collided with a car on the southbound San Diego (405) Freeway in the Culver City area was in custody Thursday in lieu of $50,000 bail, authorities said.
The crash happened about 5:40 p.m. Wednesday on the southbound 405, south of Culver Boulevard, the California Highway Patrol reported.
Yuliana Gutierrez, 24, of South Gate died at a hospital, the coroner's office reported.
Casha Cheema, 25, of Irvine was booked on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and failure to remain at the scene of an accident involving injury or death, the CHP reported.
Gutierrez was riding on a 2009 Yamaha motorcycle that was in the HOV lane when Cheema, driving a 2006 Toyota Prius in the number 1 lane, began "changing into the HOV lane over double yellow lines to avoid slowing traffic ahead of her," the CHP reported.
"As she began to move into the HOV lane, she did not see (the motorcycle) and sideswiped (it), causing (it) to be pushed into the center divider wall,'' according to the CHP's preliminary report.
Gutierrez suffered major head trauma and died about five hours after the crash, the CHP reported.
After the crash, Cheema stopped and checked on the motorcyclists, but then allegedly fled onto the nearby eastbound Marina (90) Freeway "just as CHP units were arriving on scene,'' the CHP reported. Witnesses pointed out the suspect, who was arrested.
The operator of the motorcycle, a 30-year-old Hawthorne man whose name was not released, suffered a minor injury, according to the CHP.