SFPD Arrests Driver for Killing Pui Fong Yim, 78, at Stockton and Sacramento

Image: CBS 5

SFPD arrested an SUV driver, 40-year-old Calixto Dilinila, for killing 78-year-old Pui Fong Yim Lee in a crosswalk Saturday at Stockton and Sacramento Streets, outside the Stockton tunnel.

Calixto Dilinila. Photo: SFPD

Witnesses told CBS 5 that Dilinila was making a left turn from Sacramento onto Stockton when he ran Yim Lee over, as she made her way across Stockton during what family members described as her routine daily walk. Dilinila was arrested for misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter and for failing to yield to a pedestrian.

In January, SFPD’s Traffic Company Commander said a policy change initiated in 2013 allows officers to arrest drivers in fatal crashes where there appears to be “probable cause.” This marked a departure from SFPD’s earlier failure to penalize reckless driving when drivers were neither intoxicated nor fled the scene.

Ever since that policy change, and beginning with two arrests in separate crashes on December 31, four drivers (including Dililina) have been arrested for killing a pedestrian while sober and while also staying on the scene. Out of the 13 pedestrian deaths this year, Dililina is the second such arrestee.

Police Captain David Lazar told reporters that officers are still investigating Saturday’s crash. “We’re going to make a determination as to what signal lights were green, and if there was a red hand up,” he told the SF Chronicle. “On some of the blocks on Stockton Street, the light may be green, but the hand is up.”

Stockton is known to be one of the city’s most dangerous streets to cross — even though it’s the main street through pedestrian-dense Chinatown, which has the lowest rate of car ownership in the city. At Stockton and Sacramento alone, ten pedestrians were injured between 2005 and 2010, including a 74-year-old woman and a 43-year-old person who were severely injured in separate crashes. That’s according to the SF Department of Public Health’s map of high-injury corridors, which city planners have used to guide pedestrian safety improvements on streets like Stockton through the Pedestrian Strategy and WalkFirst plan.

The owner of a photography business near the intersection, who gave his name as Raymond, told KTVU, “I’ve seen six to eight people get killed on the same spot! I told the city so many times they have to do something about it.”

Yim Lee’s daughter-in-law, Susan Lee, told KTVU that she warned Yim Lee to watch out for reckless drivers whenever she heard a news report about a pedestrian death in the city.

“Remember to watch the car when you cross the street,” she would tell her. Yet, as we see time and time again, watching for cars is often not enough to stay alive, so long as streets are designed to move cars quickly, rather than keep people alive.

  • GetHubNub

    What a twisted interpretation of what I wrote. It really reflects on how you think and choose to project your own evil sentiments onto others. Do you care to quote what you’re referring to? You must be one of those radical liberals who relies on the victim mentality instead of taking responsibility for your own life. Those elderly Chinese people need to take responsibility for their lives by being attentive to the crosswalk lights that were installed with a system to prevent them from entering the street too late.

    I witness some who don’t give a darn what the street sign says who walk out into the street endangering not only themselves, but those others who may interpret their actions by assuming the light’s green aka the herd mentality. When someone enters the crosswalk they think it’s okay and don’t look up at the light.

  • GetHubNub

    I’m not at all surprised because 90% of the time it’s the pedestrian’s fault being preoccupied and oblivious to the dangers of jay walking and entering the crosswalk far too casually. I can assure you the peds are out of line in this city abusing the law that protects them from vehicles no matter what they do. The consequence is often serious injury or death for abusing the grace provided to them in that law.

    These people can get real and take responsibility for their own lives and stop believing cars will stop for them for their unlawful entry into the street and crosswalks or they can continue with the victim mentality of their poor little lives getting hit by cars. When they’re dead for relying on a magical law that they can do whatever they want with impunity, I hope they’ve at least received Jesus into their lives.

  • GetHubNub

    Once again, allow me to reiterate. I take issue with those who politicize this issue. I experience and witness what happens on the streets of SF each and every day for the past 5 years. I feel I’m well qualified to be contributing to this forum because I’ve been all over this city on a electric bicycle. The areas I cover on a bike are generally between Dog Patch all the way to the Sunset up to 23rd street as well as the Richmond District’s Veteran’s hospital. I’ve covered 15,000 miles on my bike since 2009 sometimes in rain, cold temps and windy conditions since I’m on-call.

    1. Chinese elderly and the disabled are entering crosswalks without regard for the street lights that only have 2 seconds remaining for large streets.

    2. People in the multitudes are jaywalking as if it’s normal and they do so very arrogantly without regard for traffic or bicyclists and often don’t bother to look if cars are coming or not.

    3. Skateborders have come into the fray, the ones with electric boards as well who are just recklessly riding around on busy streets with headphones and earbuds. Their arrogance is astounding to witness as if they can just do whatever they want on the streets. I’ve seen them swerve in and out of traffic on those electric skateboards without a care in the world.

    What I’m seeing is a trend of crazy pedestrian activities disregarding the lights, entering into the crosswalk far too casually without regard for light changes. They are like zombies tuned into their iPhones who aren’t checking for traffic. I witness them continually jay walking across major streets without a care causing a lot of chaos. They are self absorbed and arrogant to have ear buds in their ears, or headphones without regard for the reality of the dangers around them. This was unheard of years ago.

    The jay walkers often don’t bother to look to see if cars are coming, they are selfishly wanting to avoid having to wait for lights and there isn’t any law enforcement to stop them. This happens on every street in San Francisco every day. I witness long lines of people walking in front of 555 California building in the middle of the street when the crosswalk is only a few yards away. That’s right, they walk in the middle of the street rather than using the cross walk, and it’s a very wide street (between Kearny and Montgomery). There is traffic, there are bicyclists and they have the AUDACITY to enter the street without a care. They are too lazy to go up a few years to the crosswalk and endanger everyone else.

    Every single day there are stragglers who are self absorbed with their iPhones who don’t check to see the lights have changed and they’re in the middle of the cross walk when the lights turn green for cars to go. If pedestrians don’t want to be killed they need to look out for themselves and stop playing the victim.

  • 94103er

    Wow, is this a joke?

  • 94103er

    Whoa, um, hey everybody, tl;dr so I’ll sum up, pedestrians got it comin’ to ’em. No need to investigate further; SFPD, go on home.

  • 94103er

    I think it’s safe to say this guy’s perspective was well formed before he even got on this purported ’20mph electric bike,’ which apparently he thinks makes him omniscient.

  • nhburdick

    Sadly, it does not appear this person’s postings are anything but earnest and sober in the writer’s mind. Data from SFPD show that over 60% of all reported crashes with pedestrians are ‘driver at fault’ — and clearly, in many cases, the person getting hit is either dead or so seriously injured as to not be able to provide a counterpoint, so that percentage by all common-sense standards is likely an undercount.

    But the poster has ‘personal experience’ that is apparently statistically sound and factually indisputable.

    Moreover, not only does he/she observe a different reality than the data show, he/she is also able to determine state of mind and intent on the part of the individual people walking. A lot of judgement being cast, for someone who references Jesus’ grace in their post.

  • Lego

    Ummmm, there’s a busy sidewalk on both sides of that tunnel. It, by my estimation, carries way more peds than personal ‘vehicles.’ (I’ve used this tunnel for 20 years daily). There’s a bike path in there and 3 of the busiest bus lines go through it. The attraction to this tunnel is great and is the same* for all users, It beats the alternative going up and over the Stockton hill. Please open your perspective beyond the windshield. “Sole purpose” – c’mon. Please be smarter than this.

    *except motorists don’t need to literally carry themselves over the hill – so some of the other modal users need it more.

  • Lego

    17% of Chinatown residents own cars. There are so few cars on Stockton for a variety of reasons. Mostly because it is slow. Perhaps there is more of an inconvenience for a very few drivers, but the population density is 75,055/Sq.Mile (wiki). 100,574 people live here. Every few inches of that (public) street space is important – shoppers are crammed into a narrow sidewalk, almost climbing over each other just to walk down Stockton street. I think for the good of Chinatown a few drivers can be moderately inconvenienced. So few come anyway. Greatest good for (the overwhelming) greatest number. Wide open car access is not suitable for every place. This is an exceptional street in practically the whole country.

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