Driver suspected of killing a jogger near LMU had been on the lam for four years

By Gary Walker

Paul Grover was jogging along Lincoln Boulevard when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver on Jan. 9 near LMU Drive

On Jan. 9, 2014, a speeding car struck and killed a jogger near the Lincoln Boulevard entrance to Loyola Marymount University.

Now, after four years of searching, the LAPD’s Major Crimes Division has announced they’ve captured the woman suspected of driving the car that ended Playa Vista resident Paul Grover’s life.

At a Jan. 24 press conference across from Bluff Trail Park in Westchester — mere feet away from the scene of the crime — police announced the arrest Brittnee Crawford, 27, on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony hit-and-run. Crawford’s boyfriend, 26-year-old Joshua Walker, was also arrested and has been charged with being an accessory after the fact.

Police arrested both suspects at their home in Perris, near Moreno Valley, on Jan. 18.

Grover, 62, was out jogging at approximately 4:15 a.m. when he was struck by a southbound vehicle. He died from his injuries the following day.

LAPD West Traffic Bureau Officer Martha Dominguez, the case’s initial investigator, said the car veered off the roadway near LMU Drive and sheered a light pole before colliding with Grover.

Capt. Robert Long of the LAPD’s Major Crimes Divisions told reporters that witnesses saw Crawford’s vehicle hit Grover and that Crawford allegedly stopped and volunteered to take the badly injured Grover to the hospital while one of the witnesses waited for police and paramedics to arrive.

“As the police arrived, Ms. Crawford fled the scene on foot,” Long said.

A witness also said Crawford appeared to be “highly intoxicated” when she stopped to check on Grover, Long said.

LAPD Det. James Dickson, the lead detective on the case, said police were able to confirm Crawford as the driver of the car that struck and killed Grover through witness statements and forensic evidence found in the car, which they were able to trace to her. Last February, police obtained a warrant to arrest Crawford, who had left California for Nevada.

“Last week we received information that Ms. Crawford was back in California and our detectives arrested Ms. Crawford and Mr. Walker,” Long said.

Dickson, who worked the case for two years, said Walker impeded the investigation by “providing false information about the suspect’s whereabouts.”

Grover had operated P.K. Grover Insurance Services in Playa Vista from 2004 to 2006.