A 56-year-old woman walking with her mother on the Mesa was struck and killed by a pick-up truck Friday morning, December 4.
Janette Zuzalek and her mother were about two to three feet outside the crosswalk, headed northbound across Shoreline Drive at Loma Alta, crossing from intersection’s the southeast curb. Despite not being in the crosswalk, the two “had established their position in the roadway thus giving them the right-of-way,” according to a police press release.
Meanwhile, Sean Cornelis was driving his 1999 Ford F-150, making a left turn from southbound Loma Alta to eastbound Shoreline Drive at the same time. “He stated the sun was in his eyes and he suddenly felt the ‘thump’ and saw Zuzalek’s mother standing in front his truck,” according to the release, and immediately stopped to see Zuzalek lying on the road.
Bystanders stopped, including off-duty medical personnel, who started CPR, as the woman had no pulse and wasn’t breathing. She was rushed to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital with a severe skull fracture, police said, and no brain activity. Four hours later, physicians declared Zuzalek brain dead. She was kept alive by a ventilator until family members arrived.
Police are continuing to investigate, and it is unknown if any charges will be filed against Cornelis.