A California doctor cycling on the Pacific Coast Highway was mowed down by a Lexus and then stabbed to death by the driver, who was finally restrained by bystanders. Michael Mammone, 58, was struck from behind by a car while he was riding in the bike lane on the Pacific Coast Highway in Dana Point around 3 pm on Wednesday, authorities said.
According to the Orange County Sheriff's Office, the driver got down from his Lexus and stabbed Mammone, and left him lying on the highway with multiple injuries. Bystanders who witnessed the horrific incident pounced on the driver and retrained him before police arrived and took him into custody.
Witnesses claimed the man approached Mammone while brandishing a BB pistol before stabbing him. Mammone was stabbed from behind and fell on the highway and lay bleeding there with several injuries.
A chilling video has emerged that captures the moment Mammone was mowed down by the car. The video shows the car coming at high speeds first hitting the cyclist. A few seconds later the driver is seen rushing at Mammone and then stabbing him.
According to Sgt. Mike Woodruff, Mammone was "launched" by the collision into the Crown Valley Parkway junction.
The suspect, who was later identified by officials as 39-year-old Long Beach resident Vanroy Evan Smith, was detained by bystanders and then taken into custody by cops. Smith has since been charged on suspicion of murder. Mammone was rushed to the hospital, where he died from his injuries.
A knife that is believed to have been used in the attack was found at the scene. The sheriff's office has not revealed if a gun was also recovered from the scene.
Police said the men did not appear to know each other.
"As of right now we currently don't truly understand the why ... as far as motivation and any type of relationship," Woodruff told KTLA.
"Investigators are keeping all options open to check those boxes, if you will, to make sure they don't leave anything uncovered."
Police said that an investigation is ongoing and more details will be shared in due course. Video from the scene showed a broken windshield and damaged front of the vehicle along with Mammone's battered mountain bike.
The Orange County Fire Authority received a call around 3 pm about a bicycle accident near Crown Valley Parkway and East Pacific Coast Highway.
Mammone has served as an emergency room physician at Providence Mission Hospital Laguna Beach since 2011. Additionally, he also worked out of Santa Ana's Children's Hospital and Mission Viejo's.
"We are stunned by this devastating tragedy. The entire Mission Hospital family is grieving over the loss of an incredible physician and friend. We will honor Dr. Mammone's dedication to our community and passion for medicine by continuing to provide exceptional care," the hospital said in a statement.
Mammone was described as an "excellent doctor" by mission employees. Mammone received his medical degree from The University of Southern California's Keck School of Medicine I 1993.
A representative for Providence Mission Hospital told The Los Angeles Times that he had a large number of Laguna Beach friends and family who were shocked to hear of his death.
Mammome lived only a few blocks away and frequently rode his bike to work. The tragedy happened less than a mile away from the hospital.