Man struck, killed crossing street in Palmdale

(Photo by ED FROMMER)

PALMDALE – A 34-year-old man was killed Monday night after being struck by a van while trying to cross a busy street in Palmdale, authorities said.

Michael Lee Simnitt of Palmdale was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Officer.

Palmdale deputies responded to the scene around 9:03 p.m. on Tierra Subida Avenue near the intersection of Date Palm Drive, according to Palmdale Station traffic detective Jeff Perkins.

“The preliminary facts of this investigation indicate [Simnitt] began crossing Tierra Subida Avenue (mid-block), from the eastern side of the roadway to the western side of the roadway,” Perkins said in a news release.

Simnitt walked directly into the path of a 2004 Toyota Sienna van that was traveling northbound on Tierra Subida Avenue, Perkins said.

The van was being driven by 38-year-old Mercy Camou of Lake Hughes. Camou was not injured in the collision.

Tierra Subida Avenue was closed to routine traffic between Date Palm Drive and Palmdale Boulevard until approximately 1:30 a.m. while the incident was being investigated.

The collision remains under investigation by the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station Traffic Office.

  50 comments for “Man struck, killed crossing street in Palmdale

  1. FriendofMikes
    January 11, 2013 at 4:24 pm


    Mike was a dear, dear friend of mine and I was fortunate enough to refer to him as “my brother” in life. If any of Mercy’s friends or family members are reading this, or Mercy herself, please know that I send my deepest sympathies. I can only speak for myself, but I cant even begin to imagine what you and your family are going through. Fault or not, nobody wants to unintentionally take anothers life, especially under these type of circumstances. So while it is hard for all right now, and our DEEPEST love goes out to the friends and family of Michael – please know that you are in my thoughts as well and I truly hope you can one day heal from these horrible circumstances that you both have encountered.

    (For other friends and family that may not agree with my statement above at this very, very sensitive time, Thank you and I fully understand & appreciate your honesty. But the fact remains that truly only two people know what transpired that day, again- fault or not, and none of those two people are us.)

    All my love….

  2. Karen
    January 10, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    This “pointing fingers” thing needs to stop! All these debates, don’t take away from the fact that my friend lost his life. Enough already! All the “know it alls”, about crosswalks, speed and darkness of roads, need to wait for the results of the investigation before they jump to conclusions. Why don’t you put yourselves in the shoes of the Simnitt’s and have some respect. If you don’t have anything nice to say, then get a life, get off this website and pay your disrespect elsewhere!
    Love and respect to the Simnitt family, and all who knew and love Mike. Most of all, love and respect to Mike, who is resting at peace.

  3. Karen
    January 10, 2013 at 7:01 pm

    This “finger pointing” needs to stop! This “who’s right and who’s wrong” doesn’t take away the fact that my friend lost his life! These debates about “crosswalks, speed, darkness of roads” are disrepectful to all who are mourning Mike’s death. Before anyone jumps to conclusions, why don’t you wait for the investigation to be concluded and quit being “know it alls” about somebody and something you know nothing about. If you put yourself in his family’s shoes, I’m sure you would feel the same. Leave Mike’s family alone and let the Simnitt family and all who loved him mourn in peace. If you don’t have anything nice to say, then get off the internet and get a life! I know Mike would feel the same. RIP, Michael, thinking about you and remembering the good times we had. My respects and condolences go out to the Simnitt family and my thoughts and prayers go out to all who are affected by this tragedy.

  4. Gladys
    January 10, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Dear Dear Thomas, I never said she was a bad driver.

    Family Member, Thomas is one of those people who likes to spin things for argument sake.

    I rest my case.

    • Thomad
      January 13, 2013 at 9:14 am

      I apoligize. In your own words you descibe her as unreasonable.

      • Gladys
        January 13, 2013 at 9:39 pm

        apology accepted. DA

  5. L
    January 10, 2013 at 9:15 am

    Coming out of the emergency room? What exactly happened here?

  6. John L.
    January 9, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    RIP cousin. My heart goes out to you and the fam.

  7. 123
    January 9, 2013 at 5:24 pm


    • Ruth Ann Williams
      January 9, 2013 at 7:24 pm

      Mike was like a 4th son to me, as he was close to my son, with the same 1st name, (Mike) Acosta. Mike spent countless hours at our home for family meals, reunions, holidays, etc. My heart goes out to his parents, sister and other family members. Mike brought laughter and love to all he met. RIP Mike, you will be missed, my friend.

      • Family member
        January 9, 2013 at 7:44 pm

        Thankyou Ruth

      • Karen & Jeff
        January 9, 2013 at 9:14 pm

        We met Mike through your son, Mike (Acosta) many years ago and have remained good friends ever since. We are so sad to hear the horrible news. This is such a tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of Mike’s family and dearest friends. We know he was loved by all who knew him and he will certainly be missed and never forgotten. RIP, our brother, Mike.

        • Family member
          January 10, 2013 at 12:38 am

          Thankyou Jeff and Karen

  8. toria
    January 9, 2013 at 10:56 am

    This is not a Dark street, no crest of a hill and not busy at 9pm…from what I read he was walking to the WEST side of the street across from the Hospital that is on the East side…It is true the speed limit is 50 mph on this street I think that is excessive and people do a lot faster here, I don’t like it either…but for what ever reason the driver and Victim did not see one another and well that is why they are called accidents. only my best go to both partys! For thoes of you that praise crosswalks it could have happened in the crosswalk as well….PEDESTRIANS HAVE THE RIGHT OF WAY NOT THE MACHINES CALLED CARS THAT ARE IN A HURRY AND FORGET IT IS OUR RIGHT TO GO FIRST, I see people in the crosswaslk here on TS trying to cross on the WALK SIGN while some impatient driver is almost running them down, it get’s me mad that these drivers cannot even wait….

    • RC
      January 9, 2013 at 2:19 pm

      Had he actually been “crossing on the WALK sign” then we wouldn’t be here discussing his death. Had he actually been crossing on the crosswalk and been mowed down by an impatient driver then it would be right to point the blame at “impatient drivers who cannot wait”.

      But the simple fact of the matter is that he attempted to illegal cross the stree mid-block. Those laws exist for a reason.

      There’s a crosswalk just down the hill at Palmdale Blvd and there’s a crosswalk just up the hill at Date Palm Dr. Those two crosswalks are only a quarter-mile apart. The one at Date Palm is specifically for hospital foot traffic. What was so important on the other side of the street that he couldn’t use either of the two available crosswalks?

      • Family member
        January 9, 2013 at 3:49 pm

        Please reconsider my reply to your previous post, that issue has been addressed. You are right in saying that we are discussing his DEATH, I hope that I come from a community that values human life over paint on a road. The real debate: If the multiple victims and families affected by this horrific tragedy are not finger pointing or making a political statement, why then are you? We have City Councils for that type of change…join one.

        • Gladys
          January 9, 2013 at 5:39 pm

          Family member. I am sorry about your relative.
          Crosswalk or not, no one should be hit by a car….cars have windshields for a reason. A reasonable person would be looking in front of their car at the street to see it there is someone or something in the street.Scanning the area, getting the big picture.
          The crosswalk theory was just blown when a woman got hit in Palmdale today as she crossed IN THE CROSSWALK.
          Again, I am sorry for your loss.

          • Family member
            January 9, 2013 at 7:47 pm

            Thankyou Gladys

          • Thomas
            January 10, 2013 at 12:53 pm

            Gladys, I am sure the driver of the care appreciates you calling her a bad driver as well as not responsible enough to drive. This is a tragedy for all parties involved. The fact is the vehicle had the right of way but that does not make it any less of a tragedy. Pedestrians do sometimes step in front of vehicles. Drivers are sometimes distracted. Accidents happen and I am pretty sure the driver would love to have not been involved in this accident.

        • Gladys
          January 9, 2013 at 6:27 pm

          Family member,
          There is a group of people who post on these blogs that are worse than any ambulance chaser, or schoolyard bullies you will encounter. They are a gang of suits (or not). Good ole boys and girls, fern street mafia. They attack everything and put their wierd twisted spin on everything. Lots of double talk. They get personal sometimes and change their positions depending on what screen name they are using. One thing for sure, they are all high fiving eachother and tag teaming their victims. Hitting the “thumbs down” so your post will disappear.
          I think the majority of people in this valley feel bad for someone’s family when a family member has been struck by a car and killed.
          Don’t let these guys burn the energy you have and need to recover from your tragedy.

          • Family member
            January 9, 2013 at 7:36 pm

            Thank-you Gladys, yes I think I’ve said all that I need to say.

          • ray coker
            January 12, 2013 at 5:25 pm

            u are my brother in this life and the next love u bro godbless mikes family

        • toria
          January 9, 2013 at 10:08 pm

          YOU ARE SO RIGHT FAMILY MEMBER. it is great you can see both sides of this tragedy and feel for the driver, I know God has touched your heart. I saw that when you all were praying at the site…May the Lord continue to Bless you with peace..

          • Family member
            January 10, 2013 at 12:35 am

            Thank-you toria

      • Jeff
        January 11, 2013 at 7:43 am

        Hope its your son or daughter next, then we will discuss legalities at their funeral. [removed]!

  9. jabonie
    January 9, 2013 at 6:14 am

    R.I.P…but he’s the kind of person that gives crosswalks a bad name. Poor unloved crosswalk, if we just gave it more attention when it was younger, it could have been there for him in his time of need…:(

  10. Yo Mama
    January 8, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Damn shame. He never knew what hit him. I think that’s ok…..

  11. hdlopez
    January 8, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    Mike is an old friend of mine. My prayers go out to him and his family. R.I.P. MIKE
    Love & Respect, RICHARD

    • Family member
      January 8, 2013 at 9:07 pm

      thankyou Richard

      • toria
        January 9, 2013 at 10:40 am

        I saw the Prayer Gathering last night at the power pole and all the candles I almost stopped to pray with you all but said a prayer for you as I drove by because I knew that something bad had happened because you were there but did not know what, I live in the homes behind here and now that the Hospital is here we hear sirens all the time and don’t pay attention anymore…I am so sorry for your loss, may he rest in peace and may the Lord comfort you at this dark time in your life….

        • Family member
          January 9, 2013 at 2:05 pm

          Thankyou toria

  12. meg
    January 8, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    Mercy Camou who is married to Jon?

  13. erin
    January 8, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    He was my friend and he will be missed. R.I.P. Mike say hi to J.P. for me

    • Family member
      January 8, 2013 at 9:07 pm

      Thankyou Erin

  14. Family Member
    January 8, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    Howabout *gasp* some consideration and prayer for the driver also, Mercy Camou. Next time someone wishes to point fingers, I pray that they will stop long enough to use their whole hand to reach out to others instead.

    • Family member
      January 8, 2013 at 8:44 pm

      *the above comment was made by Mikes family member

      • toria
        January 9, 2013 at 10:44 am

        Great Gesture it must not have been any easy for the have a big forgiving heart…bless you!

        • Family member
          January 9, 2013 at 2:09 pm

          Bless Us All, thank-you toria

  15. Family Member
    January 8, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    Howabout *gasp* some consideration and prayers for him and his family. He is dearly loved and will be greatly missed.

    • erin
      January 8, 2013 at 6:11 pm

      My condolences to you and the rest of the family.

      • Family member
        January 8, 2013 at 8:23 pm


  16. Napalma
    January 8, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    We should ban pedeatrians. Then we should create ‘car accident free zones’ because that is the only way this will be prevented from happening again.

    • RC
      January 8, 2013 at 3:28 pm

      How about… *gasp*… we make people cross the street at designated crossing areas. We could call them “crosswalks” and install them at half-mile intervals on major streets. Problem solved!

      • Cboo
        January 8, 2013 at 3:46 pm

        I agree… Anybody losing their life is sad but crosswalks are there for this very reason. Just last night while driving down Ave J just west of Sierra Hwy a group of men took their sweet time crossing Ave J just expecting us to watch out for them.

      • justbeingreal
        January 8, 2013 at 7:15 pm

        Exactly, that’s what crosswalks are for. People just need to use them !

      • Family member
        January 8, 2013 at 8:49 pm

        I’m sure he would have used the crosswalk, had he not been distraught and disoriented leaving the emergency room.

        • FriendofMikes
          January 8, 2013 at 9:06 pm

          Hi Family Member, leaving the emergency room – what happened?! Quite a few of Mike’s friends would like to help out in any way we can, is there any way we can reach you or the family? Our thoughts and prayers are with you!! xo.

          • Family member
            January 8, 2013 at 9:15 pm

            thankyou, you may email to

  17. RC
    January 8, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    Not a “busy street” at all, but still a fast-moving one. Driver going 55mph over the crest of a hill and around a curve – in the dark. Pedestrian should have been more careful. Sounds like he was walking from the direction of the hospital.

    Who knows…

Comments are closed.