Scores honor teen killed in street racing crash

More than 100 people braved a bitter cold wind for a candlelight vigil in honor of a teen who died after a street racing crash.

No one spoke for 30 minutes at the vigil for 17-year-old Louis Sanchez. It was held at a makeshift cross near the site of the crash, along Smith Road near Ensenada Street. It was organized by Louis's sister Claudia Sanchez.

"Louis was such a good person, so the fact that they just left him -- they just left him here," said Claudia.

On Dec. 29, Louis was driving with two others when his car was hit by a BMW involved in an illegal street race. Louis died from his injuries on New Year's Eve.

At Friday night's vigil, his cousin Roger Valadez admitted that they had just finished their own street race when they were hit.

"That was stupid. It's not something nobody should do; shouldn't put their life at risk," said Valadez. "Don't come out here, it's not worth it. You could lose your life in an instant."

Valadez said he was sitting behind Louis and had to crawl out the front driver's side window to get out of the car. He suffered a fractured neck in the crash.

"I saw the lights of the BMW just hit us. I blacked out for a couple seconds and saw my cousin just lying there," said Valadez. "I was just looking towards the BMW to see if they were still in there, but all I saw was them running off."

He said he stayed behind to care for his cousin and another occupant, instead of running after the people who hit their vehicle.

"Cowards. They came back, but just to see if they had left anything in their car," said Valadez. "(I would) just recognize them by car and by what they were wearing, they never turned around."

Aurora Police said the BMW was reported stolen out of Denver on Dec. 20. It was a "puffer" vehicle, where the car was left running with the keys inside.

Police believe five people ran off from the BMW. They haven't made any arrests, but have at least one person of interest.

"They should just come forward. Justice for my cousin," said Valadez.

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