HOLLYWOOD HILLS—A woman was killed by her friend in a road rage incident in Hollywood on January 14. The Los Angeles Police Department reported that at 11:54 p.m., a grey Mercedes Benz collided with the rear tire of a motorcycle also traveling southbound Martel Avenue. The Mercedes continued driving southbound on Martel Ave, turned into a driveway and was confronted by the motorcyclist.
The victim has been identified as Sophia Ardalan, 27, by the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office. Video footage of the incident shows the victim’s body covered in a white sheet, as an officer set up a tent around her.
The motorcyclist turned onto Martel Avenue, which led into a residential neighborhood, where he reached a dead end at an apartment complex on the 1300 block of Martel Avenue.
The Mercedes continued driving southbound on Martel Ave, turned into a driveway and was confronted by the motorcyclist.
Both the driver and passenger of the gray Mercedes exited the vehicle and engaged in an argument with the motorcyclist. The passenger entered the front passenger seat of the vehicle which started to move forward with the driver’s side door open. The driver attempted to enter the driver’s seat of the moving vehicle as the car collided with the curb and a tree. The driver was knocked down, became trapped under the Mercedes and succumbed to her injuries.
The suspect has been identified as Samantha Cunha, 27, who got into the driver seat to put the car in reverse. Ardalan was run over by Cunha.
As Ardalan laid on the street, Cunha fled the scene. Authorities captured her and she was detained on January 15 after 7 a.m. She was booked for felony hit-and-run and her bail was set at $50,000.
Ardalan’s mother told CBS Los Angeles that her daughter just recently befriended Cunha. She was a nightclub manager and mother who leaves behind a four-year old daughter.
The motorcyclist remained at the scene to help investigators. The two women and the motorcyclist did not know each other prior to the accident. The motorcyclist claims that the two women damaged his bike. It is still unclear to investigators what caused the accident.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact West Traffic Division Investigator, Osborne, at (213) 473-0234. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (1-877-527-3247). Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call the LA Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477) or go directly to www.lacrimestoppers.org.
Tipsters may also visit www.lapdonline.org and click on “Anonymous Web Tips” under the “Get Involved-Crime Stoppers” menu to submit an online tip. Lastly, tipsters may also download the “P3 Tips” mobile application and select the LA Regional Crime Stoppers as their local program.
Written By Christianne McCormick and Casey Jacobs