$25,000 reward offered in motorcyclist’s 2020 death 

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By Emilie St. John

Contributing Writer

INGLEWOOD — City officials have approved a $25,000 reward for information related to the death of motorcyclist Jose Samuel Galvez Pineda.

Pineda was killed Dec. 6, 2020, around 4:30 p.m., in front of his home near the intersection of 108th Street and 8th Avenue.

Months after his death, Pineda’s family was frustrated with the lack of communication from the Inglewood Police Department.

“We do not know about them, they do not communicate with us, we are calling and calling, they have no clues, they have nothing,” said Érika Moreno in an interview with Univision.

“He was my husband, the father of my children, he is a human being, he had a mother, some brothers,” Moreno said through tears. “He left me alone with my five children.”

The Aug. 15 City Council agenda staff report said the fatal crash involved Pineda and two other cars which were identified as a Cadillac Escalade and a Chevy Tahoe.

Councilwoman Gloria Gray had questions about how it is determined if rewards are offered.

“It’s up to the police department and a reward can be offered if they feel the trail has gone cold and all leads have been exhausted and we can go no further and if the department makes the recommendation the reward can be offered,” Mayor James Butts Jr. answered.

Gray then mentioned there are quite a high number of cold cases.

“There are a number of cold cases and they are all deemed worthy of a reward because of the particular facts and circumstances surrounding each case,” Butts said.

The city has installed extensive camera systems throughout the area immediately surrounding venues in the city’s Sports and Entertainment District, leaving it difficult to monitor traffic collisions in other parts of the city.

Residents continue to come to City Council meetings about the unsafe driving conditions and speeding throughout the city.

During an April City Council meeting residents complained about a high-traffic corridor in District 1, which is represented by Gray, along 8th Avenue between Crenshaw Boulevard and 78th Street which is the site of many near fatal accidents.

Three days after the woman appeared at the council meeting, a wrecked vehicle was found abandoned on 8th Avenue around the corner from both the mayor and Gray’s homes.

“The corridor you speak of is primarily in the city of Los Angeles and we have added motor officers to the Inglewood side,” said Butts at the time the resident voiced her concerns.

The two motor officers the Inglewood Police Department had have been promoted to supervisor and are no longer visible patrolling the city on motorcycles.

During the Aug. 15 meeting, the City Council approved an agreement with Select Electric Inc., in excess of $1 million, to provide pedestrian safety improvements in Districts 2 and 3, which are represented by Councilmen Alex Padilla and Eloy Morales Jr. and are in close proximity to the Sports and Entertainment District.

The staff report indicates a support letter was received from the South Bay Cities Council of Governments. The funds for the project will come from Proposition C Local Return Fund.

Gray asked if any of the improvements would be in her district.

“Centinela and Market and Manchester and Cedar are not in District 1 so there are no items on the agenda related to District 1,” Butts said.

Gray further asked how the intersections were selected.

“At Manchester and Cedar we had a fatal collision at the crosswalk and the determination was made to increase safety at the intersection and had the same issue at Centinela and Market Street and it’s a fairly high speed thoroughfare with a crosswalk so a pedestrian traffic control device is being put there,” Butts said.

Emilie St. John is a freelance journalist covering the areas of Carson, Compton, Inglewood and Willowbrook. Send tips to her at emiliesaintjohn@gmail.com.

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