Stroller with child struck by SUV; Nanny killed, child injured

Crash occurred at Camino del Sur, Via Verrazzano

SAN DIEGO - An SUV struck a nanny as she pushed a baby carriage in a crosswalk on a Black Mountain Ranch street Friday, killing her and injuring the 13-month-old boy strapped in the stroller, authorities reported.

The crash at Camino del Sur and Via Verrazzano happened about 11:45 a.m., according to San Diego police.

Black Mountain Ranch resident Greg Favish was a couple of cars behind the blue Toyota 4Runner when the crash happened. He said he watched as the driver of the SUV slammed into the nanny and the baby she was pushing westbound across the street.

Witnesses said a cyclist stopped to help.

"Whoever this lady is, she's an absolute saint. She was underneath the car, hovering over the stroller, getting the infant out and controlling the scene as everyone was just coming in from all different directions," Favish said.

"I'm still in shock," said Rraj Krimi, who was sitting at the stoplight on eastbound Via Verrazzano getting ready to turn onto Camino Del Sur.

Krimi said what he saw is something no one should ever have to see.

"I saw the car dragging (the nanny) all the way to the other side of the street and I saw the lady rolling about 100 feet, almost flying," he said.

Krimi said other witnesses ran over to the nanny and administered CPR until paramedics arrived. Witnesses told 10News the mother of the baby arrived at the scene not long after the crash. She did not stay very long, rushing off to Rady Children's Hospital to be with her baby.

Medics took the gravely injured woman to Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, where she was pronounced dead, SDPD public affairs Lt. Andra Brown said.

The Medical Examiner's Office on Saturday identified the deceased woman as 41-year-old Monserrat Mendez.

As of Saturday, the baby – whose name was not released – remained hospitalized in critical condition, police said.

The driver, a woman in her 20s, was uninjured, though her blue Toyota 4Runner sustained heavy damage. She stopped and has not been cited or charged pending completion of the crash investigation, police said Saturday.

It was not immediately clear who was at fault for the crash, Brown said.

Residents say Friday's crash was not the first that has happened on Camino del Sur. In September 2011, about two miles from Friday's crash, a 56-year old woman crossing the street was hit and killed by a driver going more than 80 mph. The speed limit on Camino Del Sur is 50 mph.

"We need to slow down. We need to pay attention when we're driving," said Favish.

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