Officers with the California Highway Patrol arrested a man in connection with the fatal hit-and-run of a motorcyclist, 58-year-old Jeff Engels, that occurred on Feb. 7 in Acton.
Jim Fulton, a 58-year-old Santa Clarita resident, turned himself in to the CHP’s Newhall Office on Wednesday after he was named a person of interest during the investigation of Engels’ death, according to Officer Josh Greengard, spokesman for the CHP’s Newhall Office.
Engels died after a vehicle struck his motorcycle on Feb. 7 at approximately 6:18 p.m. on the 7000 block of Soledad Canyon Road, just east of Briggs Road.
Witnesses told CHP officers that the collision involved a white, single-cab Chevrolet or Ford truck and a motorcycle, according to Greengard.
At approximately 7 p.m. Engels was pronounced dead on the scene, according to Greengard.
The driver of the truck fled the scene and witnesses said it was last seen traveling westbound on Soledad Canyon Road, west of Briggs Road. The day after the crash, CHP officers found a truck matching the description a couple of miles away from the scene.
Since the crash, friends and family have spoken out about Engels — which included a GoFundMe started by a user named Monica Engels. It’s uncertain, at the time of this publication, what the relationship between the two are. However, the page indicated they were related.
“It brings pain to me to have to post this, I want to let you guys know that Jeff is no longer with us. It was the most tragic accident on his way home from work on Tuesday night,” wrote Monica. “Please send your thoughts and prayers to our family and friends any help will be appreciated, thanks in advance.”
Engels’ friend from high school, Bree Chierighino, said she was devastated by the news. Chierighino said she and Engels were fellow “band-camp rebels” and “science geeks” who performed together several times at events such as the Disneyland Parade for the Crescenta Valley High School marching band.
“This was amongst countless other fun adventures we shared over the years. Jeff’s contagious humor, bright smile, and sincere kindness were reflected in his curiosity and passion for life,” wrote Chierighino. “Jeff will be forever remembered as a hardworking man who deeply loved his son, his family, and the friends he made along his journey in life, and proudly served his country with honor, grace and sacrifice.”
Fulton was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and hit-and-run resulting in death. The CHP is asking anyone with information or who drove through the area with a dash camera to contact CHP, Newhall Area, at 661-600-1600.
If you would like to donate to Engels’ GoFundMe page, visit http://bit.ly/3Kb8p1d.