UPDATE: Hemet pedestrian, 46, killed by hit and run driver ID’d

UPDATED: Monday, Dec. 9, 1 p.m.

See Original Story below

HEMET — Officials have identified a Hemet transient who was struck and killed by a driver who then fled the scene Friday evening, Dec. 6. The deadly crash happened inside a residential neighborhood on Wetherly St., between W. Johnston Ave. and Warley Rd.

Officials are continuing to search for the hit and run driver and have chosen not to release any details regarding their ongoing investigation.

As the fatal hit and run investigation continues, Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner officials today identified 46-year-old, Gauthier Jr., as the man killed in the collision. A coroner’s release indicated Gauthier succumbed to his injuries at the scene and was pronounced deceased at 8:05 p.m., nearly thirty minutes after the crash was reported.

Witnesses and officials had earlier reported that Hemet police officers and paramedics performed CPR and provided other life-saving measures for about thirty minutes before the victim passed away.

Contacted for more information and details about the collision the day after the deadly hit and run, Hemet Police Cpt. Glen Brock told RCNS that due to the nature of the ongoing investigation, “we are not releasing any information on this right now.”

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information is available.


Original Story: Search for driver who fatally struck Hemet pedestrian continuing

HEMET — Authorities in Hemet are investigating a hit and run that left a man dead last night, Friday, Dec. 6. Officials have not yet publicly identified the victim and are continuing to search for information about the deadly accident, which happened inside a residential neighborhood on Wetherly St., between W. Johnston Ave. and Warley Rd.

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City of Hemet Police and Fire Departments, along with AMR and other emergency personnel, were dispatched to the neighborhood around 8 p.m., according to official radio traffic at the time. 911 callers reported an adult male in his 40s was still down on the ground after being struck by a car that fled the scene.

Various eyewitness reports from the scene indicated the incident may have begun as a minor fender bender, but turned deadly when one of the drivers who may have been involved in the collision fled the area – hitting the pedestrian as they fled from the neighborhood at high speed.

Officials work at the scene of a hit and run collision that killed a pedestrian in Hemet last night. John Stephens photo

Officers who were first to arrive at the scene found the victim still down and unresponsive and immediately began performing CPR and providing other life-saving measures. Officers continued until paramedics arrived and took over efforts to revive the mortally injured pedestrian.

Officials continued life-saving efforts for the next thirty minutes until they determined the man had succumbed to his injuries and passed away at the scene.

As officials were working at the scene, a frantic man arrived at the location. When the man attempted to cross under crime scene tape that had been set up around the area where officers were processing the scene and gathering evidence related to the hit and run, officers had to intervene and stop him.

The man claimed to possibly know the person killed in the collision and in his desperation to get to the victim, he became involved in a confrontation with officers and was ultimately detained and handcuffed. He was then held for questioning regarding his knowledge of the deceased man and his identity.

As their investigation was continuing, officers and other police officials were seen canvassing homes throughout the neighborhood where the hit and run occurred, looking for home security footage or anyone who may have witnessed the crash but had not yet come forward.

Although various witnesses at the scene described the vehicle that fled the hit and run as a black sedan, possibly a Dodge Charger, officials have not yet specified the type of vehicle they are searching for or if the black car reportedly seen fleeing the area was involved in any way with the deadly incident.

A man believed to be in his 40s was killed when a driver struck him as he walked in a residential neighborhood in Hemet last night. Timothy Franzese/Public Safety Incidents photo

Hemet PD’s investigation is active and ongoing and as of this report, officials had not yet responded to a request for further information or details about the hit and run.

Anyone who may have security footage of this incident or who has any information relevant to Hemet PD’s investigation is encouraged to contact officials at (951) 765-2400.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information is available.


Timothy Franzese/Public Safety Incident video

Eddie George/Hemet News video


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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 48, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, (the now defunct) Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 29 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 16 grandchildren.

3 comments

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  • It’s really sad that another person has lost their life to a hit and run driver. And as long as the Justice system keeps letting these drivers off with no consequences to suffer, it’s gonna sadly continue to happen more than offten. My son was killed last year by a hit and run driver. It breaks my heart that this is the drivers Second hit and run. He is possibly gonna walk with no punishment. My life has forever changed for the worst in all areas of my life. I have had to learn a new different way of living. Over something that was clearly not my fault. But what changes can we make together to stop another life from being lost is what I am pushing for “” for Justice”” to be served I think that the suspect and I should have to get involved together and come up with a plan to help save lives … I am willing to do this to keep my son’s memory alive and to know that if we could just save atleast one life from being lost or one heart from breaking then we did make a better outcome of this tragedy.. To ALL DRIVERS PLEASE IF YOU HIT SOMEONE OR SOMETHING REMEMBER ITS NOT OK TO KEEP DRIVING….. STOP…. RUNNING IS JUST MAKING THINGS WORST AND ITS NOT RIGHT FOR THE FAMILY OF THE VICTIM… DO THE RIGHT THING DRIVE RESPONSIBLE BUT IF A ACCIDENT SHOULD HAPPEN… STOP AND GET HELP PLEASE 🙏🙏🙏 EVERY LIFE DOES MATTER TO SOMEONE. AND BELIEVE ME THE PAIN THAT IS FELT IS UNBEARABLE … SO PLEASE DRIVE RESPONSIBLY!!! FROM SHAWNDA NORRIS… FOREVER JOHNNY’S MOM💙 FOREVER 20 YRS. YOUNG💙 12/12/97 TO 03/28/18
    MAY BE GONE BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN JOHNNY!! R.I.P

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