A Laguna Beach cyclist died yesterday after being struck from behind by a vehicle, then stabbed at the Pacific Coast Highway and Crown Valley Parkway intersection in Dana Point.
Orange County Sheriff’s deputies found Laguna Beach doctor Michael John Mammone, 58, lying in the intersection and suffering from severe injuries when they arrived on scene at 3:02 p.m. Mammone was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
Mammone was on a mountain bike facing northbound on PCH when he was struck from behind by the suspect’s vehicle. The driver, Vanroy Evan Smith, 39, from Long Beach, exited his car and assaulted Mammone with a knife, according to authorities. When deputies arrived on the scene, local bystanders had Smith detained. The suspect was taken into custody and later booked into the Orange County Jail on suspicion of murder. A knife believed to be used in the assault was recovered at the scene, officials said in a release.
The incident and subsequent investigation caused all southbound traffic on Coast Highway, from Vista Del Sol to Crown Valley, to close at around 3:30 p.m. Authorities later closed the portions of Crown Valley Parkway in Dana Point. All lanes of PCH remained closed until early Thursday morning, causing heavy traffic in Laguna Beach. The City sent out a total of 10 Nixle text and email alerts during and after the road closure, which kept residents informed of the traffic situation until all lanes were re-opened.
The Laguna Beach Police Department assisted the Orange County Sheriff’s Department with traffic control.
“The Laguna Beach community is heartbroken by yesterday’s incident in our neighboring city, Dana Point,” Laguna Beach Police Chief Jeff Calvert said after the incident. “We stand in solidarity with those affected and pray for healing during this difficult time.”
As of press time, there is no known connection between the suspect and the victim. The OCInvestigators will work to determine what led to this incident. This incident is being investigated by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Detail. Those with information about this crime can contact the Orange County Sheriff’s Department at (714) 288-6740. Anonymous information may be provided through Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS.