Man dies in apparent collision with Merced SWAT vehicle

MERCED, Calif.

Investigators with the California Highway Patrol collected evidence at the Merced intersection where a pedestrian was killed during a rainstorm Wednesday at dusk.

Jason Schoonhoven with the California Highway Patrol told ABC30, "As the SWAT vehicle passed the pedestrian they noticed it traveled within close proximity to their vehicle. A short time later, the male pedestrian was found to be in the slow lane at that location."

It is unclear whether the SWAT armored vehicle struck the 60 year old pedestrian or some other factor caused him to fall while crossing the street. Hubertino Vallejo of Planada died a short time later at the hospital.

"Obviously we want to see what the trauma was," said Sheriff Mark Pazin. "Was it head trauma? Which his head was bandaged we know that part. Was it enough to cause death? That is to be determined."

Investigators are not sure what the circumstances were at the time of the accident. But it was pouring rain according to a witness who lives across the street.

Fausto Mojica said, "Before I knew it there was a swarm of cops over here and some guy on the floor trying to get revived by the paramedics."

CHP investigators say a Merced police sergeant and seven officers were returning from SWAT training at the time. Each will be interviewed about what they observed before, during and following the pedestrians death.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.