KENDALL, Fla. – A Florida Highway Patrol trooper struck and killed a 17-year-old cyclist with his police cruiser late Friday along Killian Parkway in Kendall, authorities said.
Lt. Alex Camacho, a spokesman for the Florida Highway Patrol, identified the cyclist as Angel Lopez, of Miami. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Camacho said Trooper Aliek Sierra, 36, was traveling west on Killian Parkway near Southwest 108th Avenue about 9 p.m. when Lopez attempted to cross the westbound lanes and was struck. The collision threw Lopez from his bicycle, and he landed on the pavement, Camacho said.
Surveillance video shows the moment Lopez got off a bus and tried to cross the busy lanes of traffic. He narrowly missed one car before he was hit by a state trooper.
Family members said he was on his way home when he was hit.
Tears ran down the face of Beatriz Bondy as she described her grandson.
"He was a shy boy. Very decent, very quiet," Bondyas said.
She said Lopez was a reserved young man who didn't say much, but never shied away when it came to his grandmother.
"He always told you he loved you," Local 10 News' Roy Ramos said.
"Many times. I think that is the only thing that I remember," Bondyas said.
Jeanette Watkins, a friend of the victim, said the teen was a Killian student in Junior ROTC who had dreams of joining the Air Force like both his parents.
"We are just devastated of the news," Watkins said. "He was such a good kid."
Sierra, a nine-year veteran of FHP, was not hurt, Camacho said.
Local 10 News contacted the Florida Highway Patrol, which said the trooper was not responding to a call at the time and is still an active state trooper with the agency.
Adrian de Armas, Lopez's cousin, started a GoFundMe page to pay for funeral expenses.
"With a very heavy heart, I say this my little 17-year-old cousin passed away last night," de Armas said. "This is never easy for anyone to ask but I am opening a GoFundMe page asking for any kind of help."
A portion of Killian Parkway was shut down for four hours as authorities conducted their investigation.