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Fatal Hit & Run Traffic Collision

At approximately 1:10 a.m. on Saturday, the Newport Beach Police Department’s Dispatch Center received a 911 call reporting a hit-and-run traffic collision at the intersection of Newport Boulevard and 30th Street.  

The collision involved a pedestrian and a grey 2007 Nissan 350z.  At the time of the collision, the pedestrian was crossing the intersection and the vehicle was travelling southbound on Newport Boulevard.

The driver of the involved vehicle fled the area without stopping to render aid to the injured party. The pedestrian sustained life-threatening injuries during the collision and was transported to a local trauma center for medical treatment. The man succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased at the hospital less than an hour after the collision occurred.  

The man has been identified as 24-year-old Christopher Roth of Cypress.

Officers searched the area and located the involved vehicle, which had been abandoned near the intersection of 19th Street and Court Street, about half a mile from the collision site.  

After additional investigation, the driver was identified as Nancy Diana Flores. Flores was contacted in the city of Paramount and has been arrested for manslaughter and hit & run resulting in death.

The circumstances of the collision are still under investigation.

Unfortunately, tragedies like this collision are far too common, NBPD wrote in a press release. In the next two hours (on average) another pedestrian will die from injuries sustained in a traffic collision, according to data from the Office of Traffic Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Pedestrians are among the most vulnerable users of the road.

Police offer a few tips to be safe when walking on roadways:

Whenever possible, cross the street at a designated crosswalk or intersection.

Increase pedestrian visibility at night by carrying a flashlight and wearing reflective clothing.

It is safest to walk on a sidewalk, but if one is not available, walk on the shoulder and face traffic.

Walking in traffic requires the same critical-thinking skills as riding a bicycle or driving a car. Apply the same advice that you learned as a child: Stop, look both ways for approaching traffic, be safe, and be seen.  

 Anyone with information regarding this collision is asked to contact Investigator Dave Darling at (949) 644-3746 or [email protected].


Newport Banning Land Trust to Host Long Beach Students

Newport Banning Land Trust will welcome 50 students from Stephens Middle School in Long Beach next week as part of a field trip for a class project.

On Wednesday, two classes comprised of 25 students each will arrive at the Newport Banning Land Trust office with the school’s principal and respective science teachers at 10 a.m. and stay through lunch.

Newport Banning Land Trust Executive Director Robyn Vettraino, along with volunteers, will guide the students’ tour of Banning Ranch, pointing out native and invasive plants and other dominant elements in the eco system.  

A magnet school within the Long Beach Unified School District, the Stephens Middle School focus is on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. When Principal Sal Madrigal was approached with the idea for a science field trip, he was excited about the opportunity. The Banning Ranch site provides a unique experience for students to tour the diverse property, which includes an operating oil field and a habitat with both native and invasive plant species.

The Newport Banning Land Trust Education Programs currently include Field Science study with Costa Mesa and Huntington Beach High Schools and Whittier Elementary School in Costa Mesa. The students conduct field research on-site at the Newport Banning Ranch oil field, collecting scientific data for analysis.  

“We have assembled a team with the expertise to ensure educational programs for a broad range of groups, creating meaningful access to these valuable resources at Newport Banning Ranch for the community and the broader public,” said Vettraino. “This will be our first Middle School research visit and we are looking forward to it.“

For more information on the Newport Banning Land Trust’s education and other programs, contact Robyn Vettraino at [email protected] or visit


Sherman Gardens Orchid Display Dedicated

Sherman Library & Gardens’ orchid display wall was dedicated on Jan. 27 and attended by over 100 Friends of Sherman Library & Gardens.

An orchid at Sherman Library & Gardens. — Photo by Lawrence Sherwin ©
An orchid at Sherman Library & Gardens.
— Photo by Lawrence Sherwin ©

The orchid wall was sponsored in part by the Stanley Smith Horticulture Trust and the Kewell Family Trust in honor of Carol A. Kewell.

Located in Sherman Gardens’ tropical conservatory, the wall serves as an educational and horticultural showpiece. With over 1,000 plants that include 100 genera and 800 species from around the world, Sherman Gardens’ orchid collection is among its flagship collections.

The orchid display wall showcases a fraction of the collection at one time. The exhibit changes seasonally as the orchids come into bloom. The Gardens has a separate orchid house where orchids are groomed for display.  The collection is curated by Darla Miller, Sherman Gardens orchid curator, who is also President of the Newport Harbor Orchid Society.

Sherman Library & Gardens is open to the public seven days a week. For more information, visit

(L-R) Darla Miller, Scott LaFleur, Karen Jacoby, Erin Aguiar, Dan Daniels — Photo by Lawrence Sherwin ©
(L-R) Darla Miller, Scott LaFleur, Karen Jacoby, Erin Aguiar, and Dan Daniels at Sherman Library & Gardens’ orchid display dedication.
— Photo by Lawrence Sherwin ©
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