A Los Angeles County man has been charged with murder after a fatal collision that appears to have been sparked by road rage.
Oscar Villa, 24, of Hawthorne, appeared in court Tuesday in Torrance. His arraignment was postponed until Jan. 31, and Judge Hector Guzman ordered him held on $2 million bail.
Villa allegedly killed motorcyclist Jaylen Ramone Bell-Maxwell, 21, of Los Angeles, by running him off the road. “It was a very deliberate act,” Gardena police Lt. Mike Saffell said.
A preliminary investigation found that Bell-Maxwell — riding on Western Avenue, a four-lane thoroughfare — was cut off by Villa in a 2017 Infiniti Q50 sedan. The men argued as they continued driving. Villa then allegedly cut off the motorcyclist again, and both vehicles careened into the front of a bail bonds office.
The Infiniti sheared off a fire hydrant.
Bell-Maxwell, who was covered with bricks after the crash, was pronounced dead at a hospital. Villa was arrested at the scene of the crash.
Road rage may have also figured in a shooting that took place several blocks away on Christmas morning. Gardena police responding to a report of street racing on an industrial stretch of Figueroa Street heard shots as they arrived, and then found an Infiniti SUV crashed on the side of the road.
The driver was taken to the hospital with gunshot wounds.