Lau Van Huynh

Authorities have arrested a 78-year-old Murrieta man in connection with a fatal Highway 101 hit-and-run collision that killed 22-year-old Simon Chavez.

Chavez, according to the CHP, was staggering along the southbound lanes of Highway 101 between Ortega and Castillo streets around 1 a.m. the morning of January 15 when he was hit. Chavez was dead when authorities arrived, and the driver of the vehicle that struck him had left the scene.

Authorities were able to collect evidence from the scene which indicated the vehicle was a white Hyundai that likely had damage to its front and driver’s side. On January 24, investigators served a search warrant at a Murrieta address, locating a white 2011 Hyundai Tucson. Two days later, on Saturday, Lau Van Huynh was arrested and booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on $1 million bail.

Authorities said they have not determined whether drugs or alcohol played a factor in the incident, but said more information would be made available this week. A press release from the CHP also said the investigation is ongoing and more arrests are expected.


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