GLENDALE, AZ — Police have arrested a man believed to be connected to a hit-and-run crash in March that killed a Maricopa County employee and injured a second employee.
Gustav Danielson, an employee with Maricopa County Department of Transportation, and a colleague, who was not identified, were working around 3 a.m. on March 3, 2021, to remove traffic barriers that were put in the roadway near 71st and Glendale avenues after another crash earlier in the night.
As they were doing that, police said both were struck by the driver of a Dodge Ram, who then drove away from the area. The crash was captured on surveillance video and police later put out a description of the vehicle in hopes of identifying the driver.
Danielson died at the hospital. His colleague, a 35-year-old from Gilbert, Arizona, was taken to the hospital in stable condition.
Eight months later, police confirmed that they have made an arrest in the case.
Timothy James Valdivia was booked into jail on multiple counts of leaving the scene of an accident, failure to render aid after an accident, making a false report to law enforcement, and failure to give information, according to the arrest report.
Maricopa County Supervisor Clint Hickman said in a statement that the death of Danielson and the injury of the other employee was a tragedy and reminded drivers to keep their eyes on the road and to slow down or move over when going through crash zones.
"These men were simply doing their job, removing street barricades from a crash zone near 71st Avenue and Glendale, when a pickup truck struck them. This is a tragedy that could have been avoided," Hickman wrote.
"While we're all grateful for this arrest, I join MCDOT in reminding all residents to keep their eyes on the road at all times, and to slow down or move over in crash zones. Precious lives depend on it."