DeAndre Curtis Hill Held for Hit and Run That Left Motorcyclist Severly Injured and Led to Racist Banter
On Monday, an arrest in the case was announced on the Huntington Beach Police Department Facebook page.
DeAndre Curtis Hill, 47, of Costa Mesa, was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and-run, driving on a suspended license, and having an outstanding DUI warrant from an unrelated case.
The Orange County Register, citing court records, reports a man with the same name and age as Hill pleaded guilty to misdemeanor DUI charges in November and was sentenced to three years' probation and a six-month first-offenders alcohol program. "The man is listed as a fugitive in Orange County Superior Court records," according to the Register.
Around 2 p.m. on Feb. 24, police were called to Beach Boulevard and Slater Avenue, where a black car had struck a motorcycle that was also traveling northbound on Beach. The 29-year-old motorcyclist was thrown from his ride, landing on the roadway. He was taken to a hospital, where he remained as of Monday due to the extent of his injuries, which police described as "serious but not life-threatening."
The car, originally described by police as "possibly a black Dodge Charger or Magnum-style sedan," briefly stopped after the collision and then darted off.
Someone identifying himself as a friend of the motorcyclist later enlisted "The Dirty Army"--readers of TheDirty.com, a party gossip and lifestyle site--to help find the fleeing car's driver, who apparently left the motorcyclist in ICU with a broken collar bone, broken C5 neck bone, broken ribs and bruised lungs.
"Somebody out there HAS to know who this asshole is!!!" wrote the friend. "Any information is appreciated! Oh, and the guy should really hope the cops find him first. . . . People around here are sick of the reputation our city has been getting lately, and it only makes us feel worse that LOSERS like this reside in our town."
Surf City was recently ranked the top California city for drunken-driving collisions.
The friend's description of the fleeing vehicle as a black Dodge Charger with tinted windows produced less help in finding the driver and more comments about the typical person behind the wheel of such a ride being, as one put it, "a nagger."
"If that is the case, then that driver is automatically guilty," wrote the first to assume the driver's race. "Skip the whole trial process. Let's do it the old- fashioned way with a tree branch and some rope. It would be much easier and less costly. Sh*t, I should run for governor!"
As earlier noted, subsequent comments were even worse.
As it turns out, police say their suspect was driving a black, station wagon-type Dodge Magnum--a model that likely still would have drawn jabs at African Americans from some Dirty Armymen.
Police say several anonymous tips led them to Hill, who was arrested Sunday afternoon not at his home, but at a Costa Mesa hotel. He was later checked into Orange County Jail in lieu of a $60,000 bond. Investigators also found the Magnum, but the agency is not saying where it was located other than it was in Costa Mesa, though not at the hotel or Hill's home.
The PD's traffic bureau is still looking for people who witnessed the crash. Call (714) 536-5670 if you saw anything.