Chula Vista teen hit-and-run suspect arrested

CHULA VISTA (KUSI) – An arrest was made Monday in connection with a deadly hit-and-run crash in Chula Vista that claimed the life a 17-year-old girl.

The suspect, identified as George Joseph Espinosa, 47, from Chula Vista, turned himself into police around 3:30 p.m. and directed officers to the location of his vehicle, described as a white Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with black rims, according to Lt. Buddy Magor with the Chula Vista Police Department.

Espinosa was arrested on suspicion of hit-and-run resulting in death or injury and is being held at the San Diego County Central Detention Facility on $50,000 bail. He was taken into custody without incident, Magor said.

Leilani Magno, a recent graduate of Eastlake High School who planned to attend UC Irvine, was jogging in the 900 block of Lane Avenue near Scobee Park in Chula Vista around 8 p.m. Sunday when she was struck from behind by a truck that was traveling southbound on Lane Avenue and jumped the sidewalk, Magor said.

Espinosa fled the scene and Magno was taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead, Magor said.

A memorial has been set up for Leilani Magno at the scene of the incident.

Leilani’s GoFundMe page says, “Eastlake High School and the Eastlake community are mourning the loss of Leilani Magno, class of 2018, and recent victim of a hit and run incident in our community. Leilani was a top scholar and athlete. She was full of promise and potential. She was a beautiful spirit ready to begin changing the world as a freshman at UC Irvine this fall. Her family is grateful for the outpouring of support and love and is in the unexpected predicament of providing Leilani with the closure that would honor her short and beautiful life. If you would like to donate toward this effort, your support would be much appreciated.”

 

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