Family, Friends Mourn Motorcyclist Killed In El Monte Hit-And-Run

Detectives need help to find the driver of a black pickup truck that crashed into a motorcycle, killing the rider.

Video Transcript

PAT HARVEY: The search is on now for the driver of that truck who left a man for dead in the middle of an El Monte street.

JEFF VAUGHN: It happened in the area of Peck Road and Lower Azusa as the truck turned into the path of that oncoming motorcyclist. CBS 2's Rick Montanez, speaking with victims or friends of the victims today.

RICK MONTANEZ: El Monte police detectives are looking to security video to help find the driver of the Black pickup truck you see here turn in front of a motorcycle. We pause the video before impact. The rider appears to try and lay the bike down to avoid hitting the truck, but couldn't.

ANTHONY CASTILLO: He was a very good person, kind heart.

RICK MONTANEZ: Anthony Castillo says he's known the victim for years. Their kids played little league together. The centerpiece of this Memorial at the crash site, a cross with the name of the victim 56-year-old John Spata. His heartbroken family declined to speak with us, but friends say Spata was one of a kind. And they are angry at the driver who left him laid out in the middle of the street.

ANTHONY CASTILLO: When you see somebody I'm sure he was lying down and he was needing care, you need to stand around, sit around, and help out. That's so unfortunate.

RICK MONTANEZ: This happened Saturday around 7:00 PM. The motorcycle was going West on Lower Azusa Road, just past Peck Road. In this video, you see the pickup driver put on the turn signal and merge into the turn lane. The driver turns right in front of Spata. Moments after the crash, you could see several people rushing over to help him. Witnesses say the driver of the pickup actually stopped to see what happened, but then drove off moments later.

ANTHONY CASTILLO: That is so sad. I mean, he could have rendered service, help, could have called, you know, 911.

RICK MONTANEZ: Instead, witnesses did that as they tried to save Spata's life.

ANTHONY CASTILLO: It's very sad, but we remember him with good memory. He was a good father, a good family man.

RICK MONTANEZ: Police are looking for that black pickup truck a four door truck with chrome bumpers. They say it has possible front end or side damage. That video and witnesses may be the key to help finding this driver. Reporting in El Monte, Rick Montanez, CBS 2 News.