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Los Angeles Sheriff’s Recruit Injured in 2022 Wrong-Way Crash Dies

Los Angeles Sheriff’s Recruit Injured in 2022 Wrong-Way Crash Dies

A sign stands outside Los Angeles County sheriff's training academy in Whittier, Calif., Nov. 16, 2022. (Jae Hong/AP Photo)

City News Service

City News Service

7/30/2023

Updated: 7/30/2023

LOS ANGELES—Alejandro Martinez, a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) recruit who was struck by a wrong-way vehicle while training with dozens of colleagues last year, has died after an eight-month battle with severe injuries, sheriff’s officials said.
Martinez was 27. He succumbed to his injuries Friday at UCLA Medical Center in Westwood, the sheriff’s department said.
“On November 16, 2022, Alejandro was struck by a vehicle as he trained with his partners from Academy Class #464 and fought for his life for the past eight months. Today, Alejandro succumbed to his injuries,” the LASD said in a statement issued late Friday. “Surrounded by his family, friends, Sheriff Luna, and other department members in support of his family, Alejandro has now gone to his eternal resting place. Tragically, he was not able to fulfill his calling of helping others.
“Our condolences go out to Alejandro’s family, friends, and academy classmates. He will forever live in our hearts & never be forgotten. Words cannot express the extent of our gratitude to everyone who assisted, and continue to assist, and helped ease the burden of that very difficult day.”
Janice Hahn, chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, also paid tribute to Martinez.
“Last year, when we started a new effort to recruit more LASD deputies, Alejandro Martinez answered our call,” Hahn wrote on Twitter Saturday morning. “His passing, months after that terrible crash, is nothing short of a tragedy. My prayers are with his family, his friends, and his fellow recruits. May he rest in peace.”
Martinez was injured when an SUV swerved into a group of about 75 law enforcement trainees who were on an organized run at around 6:30 a.m. in the 10600 block of Mills Avenue, near Telegraph Road, just blocks from the sheriff’s STARS Explorer Academy law enforcement training center in Whittier.
Sheriff’s officials said the group of recruits was running in columns northbound on the roadway when the southbound SUV swerved to the opposite side of the road and plowed into the trainees, leaving a trail of injured bodies.
The crash injured 25 recruits, including Martinez, sheriff’s officials said at the time.
The motorist who struck the cadets, Nicholas Joseph Gutierrez, 22, of Diamond Bar, told reporters in 2022 that he fell asleep at the wheel.
He was arrested hours after the crash and booked on suspicion of attempted murder of a peace officer, but Gutierrez was released a day later with sheriff’s officials saying the complex case needed more extensive investigation.
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