Ex-Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist sued for wrongful death in alleged fatal collision

Jul 10, 2024, 3:29 PM | Updated: 5:16 pm

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ex-Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist Josh Klinghoffer is being sued for wrongful death and negligence after allegedly hitting and killing a pedestrian earlier this year.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday by Ashley Sanchez, the daughter of 47-year-old Israel Sanchez, who died after being hit while walking in a crosswalk in Alhambra, east of Los Angeles.

The collision happened the afternoon of March 18, when plaintiffs allege Klinghoffer was driving a black SUV with no license plates and turned left at an intersection with a marked crosswalk.

Video from the plaintiffs shows a black car hitting a man, who was Israel Sanchez, during the turn before pulling over. The footage was obtained from a neighbor’s Ring camera. Israel Sanchez suffered blunt force trauma to the head and died from his injuries a few hours later at the hospital, the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit also alleges Klinghoffer was using a cellphone while driving, as video footage shows the driver holding an object above the steering wheel. Video also shows a 40-foot-wide grassy median dividing the road that should have given Klinghoffer time to see pedestrians in the crosswalk, the lawsuit said.

“My dad was known for being a great chef, the most talented of his family, the greatest grandpa always full of love and joy,” Ashley Sanchez said in a news release. “His smile was so infectious. His life was taken by a careless act of a person who didn’t bother to look where he was driving.”

Klinghoffer is currently on tour with the band Pearl Jam. He could not be reached for comment.

The plaintiff’s attorney, Nick Rowley, called the incident a “reckless homicide” that law enforcement has failed to properly investigate.

“They never charged the guy or even wrote him a ticket for blowing through the crosswalk and killing someone,” Rowley said. “This is a horrific injustice.”

Alhambra police spokesperson Sgt. Brian Chung said the case was still active and could not comment further.

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Ex-Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist sued for wrongful death in alleged fatal collision