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Bicyclist killed after suspected DUI driver hits 10 cars, 2 bikes near UNLV

Updated November 5, 2022 - 11:44 am

A 27-year-old Las Vegas man is suspected in a disastrous series of collisions Friday near UNLV that involved 10 vehicles and two bicycles, and left one dead and eight injured.

The string of crashes began shortly after 5:30 p.m., when a man behind the wheel of a 2002 Ford pickup truck heading east on East Flamingo Road close to Claymont Street struck the rear of a 2011 Kia SUV, injuring its driver, then accelerated, continuing east on Flamingo, the Metropolitan Police Department said.

The pickup driver approached two cyclists pedaling on mountain bikes inside the far right bus lane, crashed into both and then sped on, heading east.

One of the cyclists, a 37-year-old not yet identified by police pending notification of family members, was killed. Paramedics transported the other cyclist, 36, also not identified, to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center where the person was listed in critical condition.

The motorist drove on and smashed into multiple vehicles stopped in the eastbound lanes of Flamingo and the intersection at Maryland Parkway, where he finally stopped, police said.

The pileup included eight other vehicles, with four people in a 2020 Toyota SUV sustaining minor injuries.

Ten people in six of the vehicles were left uninjured, including four people from Idaho in a 2020 Hyundai SUV.

The driver of the Ford truck, Marcos Francisco Benitez, of Las Vegas, had moderate injuries and was taken to Sunrise.

Police booked Benitez on suspicion of multiple charges of DUI and hit and run.

The driver of the Kia SUV, who had minor injuries, was Kowancky Claymont, 72, a Las Vegas resident.

Four people, all from Alhambra, California, who received minor injuries in the Toyota SUV, included the driver, Shelley Sun, 54, Siilas Murtonen, 65, Justin Murtonen, 19, and Brian Murtonen, 19.

Alicia Lomeli, 46, of Las Vegas, who was driving a 2019 Dodge SUV, was moderately injured.

Other vehicles involved in the collision, with the occupants left unhurt, included a 2011 Honda SUV, a 2012 Nissan sedan, a 2004 Chevrolet pickup, a 2018 Chevrolet SUV and a 2014 Toyota sedan.

Metro’s collision investigation section is handling the inquiry into the accidents.

The bicyclist was the 127th traffic-related death within Las Vegas police’s jurisdiction so far this year.

Contact Jeff Burbank at jburbank@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0390. Follow @JeffBurbank2 on Twitter.

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