Saturday, May 26 , 2018, 5:21 pm | Fair 74º


Local News

Montecito Woman Walking to Bus Stop Struck, Killed by Motorist

The driver of the vehicle, who also crashed into a bank building, told police his brakes failed

A Montecito woman died Thursday morning after being struck by a vehicle while walking to a bus stop on Coast Village Road.

Santa Barbara police and emergency crews responded about 7:30 a.m. to the scene and found a critically injured woman, 47-year-old Florinda Garcia Flores. She was transported to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, according to police Lt. Paul McCaffrey.

The driver of the involved vehicle, a Toyota minivan, was a 17-year-old local male whose identity is being withheld because he’s a minor.

The victim’s husband told police that the couple lived in a nearby residence on Coast Village Road, and that his wife was on her way to work.

According to the preliminary investigation, Flores was walking westbound on Coast Village Road, on the north sidewalk. The driver, also traveling westbound on Coast Village Road, approached the pedestrian from behind. He told police that his vehicle suddenly started to “veer to the right,” and that he tried to apply the brakes but they didn’t work. He tried to hit or use the curb to stop his vehicle when it jumped the curb and hit Flores.

The force of the impact hurled the victim a considerable distance before she landed on the pavement at the intersection of Coast Village Road and Butterfly Lane, McCaffrey said. The vehicle continued across the parking lot of Montecito Bank & Trust, 1106 Coast Village Road, and crashed into Bank of America, 1096 Coast Village Road. The crash also ripped down a 4-by-4 sign post, landscaping and a decorative brick wall.

McCaffrey said the driver of the vehicle has cooperated with police and voluntarily provided a blood sample. He said the driver did not appear to be under the influence of any controlled substance, although marijuana and paraphernalia were found inside the vehicle. The driver was cited and released to his parents pending further investigation.

The vehicle was impounded to determine the mechanical condition of the vehicle’s steering, brakes and other systems.

Noozhawk managing editor Michelle Nelson can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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