Police search for driver in deadly hit-and-run crash

SACRAMENTO - Sacramento police are asking for help to find the hit-and-run driver who walked away from the scene of a crash that killed a motorcyclist Tuesday night.

The motorcyclist, 18-year-old Evan McDonald, was hit when a van pulled in front of his his yellow Suzuki motorcycle at Del Paso Avenue and Fierenza Street. McDonald was pronounced dead at the scene.

"And I guess he got hit so hard his clothes were kind of gone," said Donna Roybal, who was celebrating her birthday nearby and arrived about a minute after the accident.

"There was a woman knelt over the man and she was trying to see if he was breathing," Roybal said.

Sacramento police want to hear from anyone who may have seen the driver of the Ford F-250 van suspected of causing the crash before or after he left the scene.

"They (investigators) do believe that there were several people, not so much right there at the accident, but immediately after," Officer Doug Morse said. "They feel that there were a lot of witnesses in the area that could have seen the driver."

Roybal believes the man she saw might have been the van's driver.

"There was a gentleman that was standing over the lady that was pacing back and forth," she said. "He looked nervous. As soon as he heard sirens, I think he left."

Roybal was only able to give a partial description, since the area was not well-lit.

"It was a blue, short-sleeved shirt. It was like a dress shirt," Roybal said. "And then he has like short, wavy hair that had silver in it, he looked very clean cut." She also said the man looked like he was in his 40s.

McDonald, who attended Grant High School, had just started a job as a lineman for Sacrament Municipal Utilities District. SMUD colleague L.V. Foster came to the crash scene Wednesday night to remember McDonald -- a young man who seemed in a hurry to get to get his future.

"He was a young guy that came in at 17 at SMUD and he had a bright future in front of him," Foster said. "He was eager, he was ready to work. I mean, the first day I met him, he came in with a big smile and I told him this is a great opportunity and man, he ran with it."

McDonald's Facebook page is filled with pictures of his true love - motorcycles. He had just bought a new Suzuki bike that he'd recently taken to a track to ride flat-out. McDonald quoted a niece who said, "Hey uncle that is cool how you rode your bike in that race - you are really cool." McDonald added, "I can't stop smiling now."

Sacramento police have canvassed nearby neighborhoods to try to get other descriptions of the driver from possible other witnesses. They're also going through surveillance tape and using the van's plates to try to track the driver down.

Foster said McDonald's colleagues have been deeply affected.

"We got the flag half-staff. We got our cranes at salute," Foster said. "Everybody's kind of taking it pretty hard."


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