Crime - Sacto 911

Homicide arrest made in downtown Sacramento hit-and-run, deemed ‘intentional,’ police say

Police have arrested a suspect in an August hit-and-run collision that resulted in the death of a pedestrian.

Homicide detectives arrested Deante Whitaker, 26, this week in connection with the Aug. 24 incident, the Sacramento Police Department said in a news release.

The pedestrian, identified by the coroner’s office as 60-year-old George Anthony Kouklis, sustained critical injuries after being struck by a newer-model, black Dodge Charger that struck him in the area of North 16th Street and McCormack Avenue about 1:35 p.m. Aug. 24. Kouklis died at a hospital days later.

Detectives learned there was an argument between the suspect and the driver of the vehicle ahead of the collision, leading detectives to call the collision “intentional” and categorize the incident as homicide.

Whitaker was arrested Wednesday as the suspected driver in the incident and booked into the Sacramento County Main Jail, facing homicide charges, according to the news release. He is ineligible for bail.

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Michael McGough anchors The Sacramento Bee’s breaking news reporting team, covering public safety and other local stories. A Sacramento native and lifelong capital resident, he interned at The Bee while attending Sacramento State, where he earned a degree in journalism.