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Pleasanton teen identified as victim in fatal pedestrian crash

Original post made on Nov 16, 2015

The pedestrian who died after being hit by a car near downtown Pleasanton Sunday evening has been identified as 17-year-old Jorge Barraza, according to the Alameda County Coroner's Office.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, November 16, 2015, 10:32 AM

Comments (36)

Posted by NicoleF
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Nov 16, 2015 at 12:08 pm

We recently moved to Pleasanton, and while I absolutely love it here, I am appalled at the way residents SPEED through neighborhoods and through downtown. I see texting, yes, but also people are just too selfish to drive 25. I feel downtown should be 15mph; there are way too many pedestrians and events going on for cars to be using Main St as a thoroughfare. We live on Black Ave and are extremely nervous while walking or riding to one of the FOUR schools in that immediate area. SLOW DOWN, please! Please, Pleasanton PD, have more officers stationed at peak school traffic times. Please, Pleasanton City - install more speed humps on streets like Black Ave.

Posted by Melissa
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Nov 16, 2015 at 12:22 pm

I agree everyone is in a rush. I live on Muirwood Dr., people drive through here going way too fast, especially considering there is a park full of kids, they are racing past. I do see patrol cars at the stop signs everyone in a while but I would like to see more speed control during Foothill High Schools release.

Posted by Donovan
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 16, 2015 at 12:37 pm

We need a stop sign or lighted crossing signs at this crosswalk. We live on First Street at Abbie and this was to close to home. We see people almost get hit here every week. In fact there was another rear end accident this morning because someone stopped for 2 kids crossing the crosswalk and the car behind them didn't stop. And another close call 1 hour after that. That crosswalk is very dark at night. You can't see people crossing the street. Pleasanton PD just keeps saying that it is not a crosswalk issue and The City of Pleasanton refuses to put lighted crossing signs at this crosswalk. "The city wont put lighted crossing signs here because they are then responsible if someone gets hit". Then this morning they told us that this is not a crosswalk issue and that is a traffic issue. They also said that there are never issues at this crosswalk and this is the first time. I guess the 2nd accident in less then 12 hours is not a issue? "if its not reported to us, then it didn't happen", that came directly from Pleasanton PD this morning. That is a dangerous intersection that needs help. Please Pleasanton do something before someone else gets hit here. Last night was very disturbing. That is the last thing you want to see out your front window.

Posted by Norm
a resident of Birdland
on Nov 16, 2015 at 1:35 pm

Jorge’s family reached out to Amador Valley in hopes of getting financial support from the community to offset funeral costs. Please go to Web Link to make a donation to the Barraza family. Thank you in advance for your support.

Posted by Me Too
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 16, 2015 at 2:18 pm

Please see Norm's post about and consider helping out this family. They are truly in need and this is a devastating thing to have happen.

Posted by Resident
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 16, 2015 at 2:22 pm

I also live near that intersection and can tell you it is not a crosswalk issue. It is a selfish, inattentive driver issue. There were three people hit INSIDE the crosswalk crossing on a green light at the corner of First and Neal. In every case the drivers were driving too fast and/or using cell phones. It is inexcusable that so many drivers in this town are so self involved and careless. PPD needs to cite all of them. But wait until the next post about the PD and read the rants from those who don't want the PD to enforce the laws.

Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 16, 2015 at 2:55 pm

First off, my thoughts and prayers go out to the family that lost their son last night. I also live on First Street and have witnessed several accidents at that crosswalk. Something needs to be done. I called the police this morning as I heard another crash due to two people crossing the street. Luckily no one was hurt but, how many people have to get hurt or die before they look at the crosswalk more closely. The police transferred me to Traffic Engineering where they said that the crosswalk isn't an issue, too much traffic is an issue. I do see that but we still need more lighting or flashing lights there.. People of Pleasanton, please call Traffic Engineering (925)931-5668 and complain about that crosswalk. That's the only way they will do something. We need to feel safe where we raise our kids!

Posted by Driver
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 16, 2015 at 3:31 pm

There must be a focus or app, a real education safety campaign for both drivers AND PEDESTRIANS to be illegal to use WALKING or driving. Walkers can stop easier than cars. It's a 50 - 50 deal. Actually as I said before, walkers can stop instantly with one foot in the air, heavy cars takes distance and time, no matter how fast. There must be intelligent use of our STREETS by both drivers AND WALKERS,,. always between the lines when stepping off the curb, NO cell chatter, reflective clothing after dusk for bikers and walkers, etc. Or maybe we can no longer share the streets and roads if it is not seen as a life or death situation. I think there should be a required class for bicycles and pedestrians similar to, and also completed before obtaining a driver's permit. In my day caring parents warned their children about road safety. It all sort of goes together at the early teen age...respect & never sass any matter what, and how to NOT walk behind bumpers in parking lots, since drivers do not have eyes in the back of their heads, step off curb only between lines, cars turn headlights on and walkers & Bikers wear reflective. aks think and use logical sense. ( I was going to say common sense, but that is so rare these days).

Posted by Get the Facts
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 16, 2015 at 3:48 pm

Get the Facts is a registered user.

Back when I was a teenager, I received numerous tickets from PPD. That was back in the 80's when PPD had a reputation for giving out a lot of tickets. A new police chief came along, and wanted to change the reputation, and encouraged or told his officers to give out less tickets and more warnings. That was a long time ago, and now they no longer have the reputation of giving out a lot of tickets.

I'd like to see PPD go back to the old way, of giving out a lot of tickets. As stated by so well by so many above, there are too many selfish drivers doing crazy things. I witnessed a fender bender the other day due to someone cutting in front of someone else trying to get into the left turn lane, the next diver hit the brakes, the driver behind hit the braking driver. The first driver drove off, probably not realizing (or caring) that their actions caused an accident.

I want more tickets being written, I want this town to have safer roads.

Posted by Damon
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Nov 16, 2015 at 4:36 pm

As a driver. I've seen dangerous behavior by some pedestrians, and as a pedestrian I've seen dangerous behavior by some drivers. My own theory is that people who are careless about looking out for others when they're behind the wheel probably also tend to be careless in looking out for others when they're walking as pedestrians. Don't know who is responsible for the accident in this case, but I wouldn't automatically blame the driver. It could be the driver. It could be the pedestrian. Or it could be that neither was properly watching out for the other.

Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Civic Square
on Nov 16, 2015 at 9:59 pm

I think it's difficult to pass judgement without knowing all of the details, but as a somewhat new resident of Pleasanton who lives in the area, I have noticed that this particular intersection is pretty dark at night and there is no shortage of distracted drivers in P-Town. I'm actually horrified by the number of drivers I see using their cell phones. My only guess is that Pleasanton law enforcement isn't cracking down on distracted drivers. I see them all the time and wish there were an easy way to report them. I prefer to walk when I can, but quite honestly, the drivers around here scare me. It's like they feel they do not have to follow laws about cell phone use while driving.

That being said, I do believe that intersection should have one of those lighted cross walks like the on on Santa Rita near the shopping center.

My heart goes out to the victim and the driver of the car. Regardless of who was at fault, this is so very sad.

Pleasanton PD, if you are reading this, please, please, please try to find a way to crack down on drivers using their cell phones.

Posted by Pleasanton Resident
a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Nov 17, 2015 at 12:18 am

Bernal Ave between Stanley Blvd and Kottinger has become a virtual freeway during commute times. Out-of-town commuters flying down our surface residential streets in an effort to bypass traffic has created an accident(s) waiting to happen.

Posted by Helen
a resident of Amador Estates
on Nov 17, 2015 at 9:30 am

We live in Amador Estates and have same issue with crosswalk at Santa Rita Road and Francisco (turning into our tract across from Safeway). Sure, Pleasanton City had flashing yellow lights to blink if one pushes button. However, I've seen even police NOT stop when it's flashing. And, YES, someone was killed there about a year or so ago! The depressing floral memorials are still there continuously which is another issue. How long are these memorials allowed to remain? People turning into our tract, are taken aback seeing those flowers there everyday.

Posted by Tom
a resident of Castlewood
on Nov 17, 2015 at 9:47 am

I agree with "Resident" on how people conduct themselves on road. There is this sense of entitlement and lack of caring about what drivers may do to others. I routinely see people speeding, using their cell phones (a major issue with distraction) and driving recklessly. Pedestrians are guilty as well, stepping off the curb onto a street without looking, expecting drivers to automatically see them and yield. Bikers on Foothill Road are frequently blithely seen riding in tandem. I do believe a lot of this stems from our self-centered society.

There is this saying: people don't change when they see the light, they change when they feel the heat. This has worked with the water cutback reduction program and it would work on poor driving with more police stops and hefty fines. No warnings, fine people.

Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 17, 2015 at 9:54 am

Honestly, I don't believe we should even have a crosswalk there. It is a very dangerous intersection being so dark, and is too close to Bernal. There are always a lot of cars parked on the sides of First and it can be difficult to see people in the crosswalk until it's too late, even if traveling at a slow and safe speed. To put a lighted crosswalk there would back traffic up pretty seriously onto Bernal. Even the crosswalk at Neal has that effect during rush hour. We don't need another one two blocks closer to Bernal. Pedestrians must also be very careful. Like another person's comments on here, pedestrians can stop midstep while a car has a lot of weight and cannot be as agile even while moving slowly. Some people will step right into the street as soon as the light turns green which may be legal, but you are not going to win if there is a car coming, or turning right. Always look! You have a lot more to lose.

Posted by Eric
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Nov 17, 2015 at 10:34 am

These crosswalks could use bulbouts like they have on Hopyard at Golden and are getting built on Black. I've been stopped on 1st waiting for a pedestrian to cross and have been passed on the right by despicable scumbags. Bulb outs eliminate passing on the right, shorten crossing distance and put the waiting pedestrian into the drivers small 10 degree cone of vision. Blinking lights in the road are all fine and dandy but are expensive and require an excessive amount of maintenance because they do have a high failure rate which is what happened on the night two years ago when my family and I watched and heard the elderly couple get horrifyingly hit on Santa Rita where one died of their injuries. We are still haunted by that. Bulb outs require no maintenance and do not break.
I would also say that the roads leading into our city should have speeds no higher than 35mph. Many if not most are doing far more than 45mph on our big streets and carry those higher speeds into our residential areas. Is the reduction of speed going to take you any longer to get across or into town? I would say not because our lights don't appear timed and if they are then they are timed to catch you at every light. A reduction of speed would make everyone safer. I would also like to see a zero tolerance from our Police Department when it comes to traffic enforcement.

Posted by pleasanton was nice forty years ago
a resident of Castlewood
on Nov 17, 2015 at 11:30 am

When you have an influx of drivers from other cultures where driving is even worse than it is here what do you expect. When you think giving a drivers license to illegals is a good idea what do you expect. America used to be a great place to drive. People were considerate and payed attention. This is not the case anymore. Have you ever driven in mexico, india, hong kong. These places are awash with lousy drivers. As our culture changes so will our driving habits. Stand up and expect better or get used to it.

Posted by Nan
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Nov 17, 2015 at 1:55 pm

I walk across Vineyard Avenue at Touriga in the crosswalk about two times a week. About 80% of the cars do not slow down and pass me after I have stepped off the curb and am in the crosswalk going across Vineyard Ave. I'm very careful and need to watch both directions and wait for cars to go by until there are no more cars. For me, just being in this crosswalk in Pleasanton does not give me a right-of-way to cross, regardless of speed or what drivers are doing in their cars. These drivers believe their right to the road is paramount.

Posted by SeeKa
a resident of Del Prado
on Nov 17, 2015 at 1:59 pm

My heart broke to a thousand pieces, when my child broke this sad news to me when I picked her up after school last day.
This morning, drove by another shocking accident scnee on Hopyard Road, involving another child biking to school, hit by a car, attended by two adults, and a police car reaching the scene.
I mean, as adult drivers,where are we all rushing to in life? Can't our businesses wait a few extra minutes, can't we slow down and follow mindful driving at least during school drop-off, pick-up hours, when our little ones are out in the streets?
Many student bikers too need to be taught road safety rules, we realize that every day, but as responsible grown-ups and parents, we must show patience, slow down and save precious lives.

My heartfelt condolences to the family of Jorge Barraza, his friends, fellow students, teachers and staff of AVHS. As Pleasaton residents, we all stand together in grief.

Posted by Nan
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Nov 17, 2015 at 2:04 pm

Post by "pleasanton" is BS. This problem has nothing to do with immigrants legal or otherwise. I was here 40 years ago too and there weren't many problems (except at the bars) because there weren't many people on the roads. Pleasanton only had a population of 6000 to 8000 people!

Posted by huggy bear
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 17, 2015 at 2:33 pm

Very sad event, so sorry for all involved in this tragedy. In this discussion the crosswalks seem to be the central theme. Are we sure the young man was in the crosswalk? My understanding is that he was not in the crosswalk. None the less, heartbreaking.

Posted by Me
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 17, 2015 at 4:18 pm

Why in the times of tragedy do we always extend our fingers and point them? This is terrible tragedy for the family and dare I say the driver.
My thoughts go out to both.

I will hold off judgment until I have the facts

Posted by Driver
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 17, 2015 at 6:31 pm

Yes, it is a tragedy. These conversations only get attention of all at the time of accidents. Pedestrians should be held equally responsible... They actually have more control of the situation. Physically, it is much, much easier for them to stop in place, on the spot. It's usually vision for both, walker NOT making THEMSELVES VISIBLE or mind on a PHONE CONVERSATION, instead of their own life. Many, particularly newcomers, think 'oh I have the right away', so take irresponsible chances. Yes, they can be "dead right" if that's their choice. Bad choice. Better to assume personal responsibility for ones own safety, Schools and caring parents should teach that for many situations.

Posted by Steve
a resident of Lydiksen Elementary School
on Nov 17, 2015 at 7:28 pm

Just this morning I saw a driver going about 45mph on the wrong side of the street passing another driver on Muirwood by the park. It was 745am there were kids everywhere.
I saw them turn up a side street to go to Foothill High. It was obviously a parent dropping their kid at Foothill. How dangerous & ridiculous passing someone on Muirwood!!
My wife called the police, but it was too late.
And, Black BMW driver, license ending in 878- SLOW DOWN BEFORE YOU HURT SOMEONE!!!!!

Posted by Joe
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Nov 17, 2015 at 7:46 pm

Driver - so we now need to practice defensive walking? The root causes in no particular order are: 1.) sheer ignorance of safe driving practices, particularly in a residential and school environment, 2.) distracted driving, 3.) constantly displaying self-centered idiocy in the form of "my kid is late to school", or "my kids need to be picked up from school IMMEDIATELY and it doesn't matter that I may endanger other children because my children come first", 4.) lack of enforcement of speed limits, particularly around schools, 5.) a DMV who will allow any breathing individual to pass their driving test, regardless of whether they show any aptitude for safe or competent driving. I'm sure I've missed a couple of dozen other causes. As referenced above, people need to slow down, understand the rules of the road as it pertains to pedestrians, and STOP ALL DISTRACTED DRIVING....

Posted by Parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Nov 17, 2015 at 8:04 pm

May God rest his soul and hold his family in the Palm of His hand. Please can't you all just send kind thoughts to this family? What is wrong with you who are sending out dribble about who is at fault. A family is grieving, two families are grieving. Be kind to one another.

Posted by Joanna
a resident of Castlewood
on Nov 17, 2015 at 8:09 pm

This is in response to a Castlewood Resident's comment. I feel sorry for your ignorance. This is not about illegal folks getting DLs or about folks from HongKong, India or Mexico. This is about reckless driving. To make my point you must go to any one of the high schools here in Pleasanton and check out the YOUNG non Mexican, non Indians or Non Hongkong students who drive and you will see how reckless and lousy they are.
You may label Mexican, Indians and Hongkong folks anything you want. But remember they are the ones who are laughing all the way to the bank. Maybe you can learn a thing or two about their culture, tolerance towards folks like you, their work ethic and there willingness to work hard and not be lazy is what has made them so successful.

Posted by Driver
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 17, 2015 at 11:28 pm

Wow Joe, I hope you're never a juror with such a closed mind, leaving NO other possibilities. Your closing line should have included STOP ALL DISTRACTED WALKING AND DRIVING!. Walkers can be so distracted with their cell chatter, they could walk off the curb, crack open their head and be gone. Dead right, but 'distracted', and NOT a car in sight!!! You think kids running behind backing bumpers are OK. A decent Mother or Grandpa would teach kiddie to never, never do that....not even when they're 30. Backers cannot see a walker, walking TOO fast to be in view, suddenly being an inch from the bumper. There again, walker could wind up dead right. Pedestrians absolutely share in the responsibility. Absolutely defensive (or smart) walking must be learned for one's own safety.
As far as driver's, in all driver's manuals, I do not recall learning about 'INCHES" to allow for stopping. I thing 'feet' have to be allowed. Any defiantly distracted walker that is inches behind a car, or inches stepping off curb outside 'crosswalk' does not allow the SLOW, responsible driver any chance to dodge the irresponsible, distracted walker. Jurors wouldn't dare blame the driver. Maybe we need walker's signing 'implied consent' and safe walking. absolutely Ca walker laws need changing, Either side can be/do wrong

Posted by dp
a resident of Danbury Park
on Nov 18, 2015 at 10:06 am

My condolences to the family.

I'm all for traffic lights on all intersections on First St, the lighted crossing is not helping much.

The corner at First and Abbie is a dangerous spot when you drive north. I had a close call about a year ago there. It was raining and dark, as I approached Abbie on First, someone dashed across First from right to left, I had to slam on the brakes to avoid him. I could only guess that was a teenage boy.

Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 18, 2015 at 10:22 am


If the pedestrian isn't jaywalking, it is the driver's responsibility. It is also the responsibility of the driver (and his family, and the DMV) who has become too old to drive safely to give up the keys.

Posted by saddened
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Nov 18, 2015 at 10:53 am

This is a horrible tragedy! My heart is not only broken for the young mans family, it also breaks for the driver! How can any of you pass judgement on the situation when you simply do not have the facts. Everyone is rushing to judge and place blame on the driver. Have any of you stopped to think of the pain that person is going through? From every article I have read, they stayed and cooperated fully with police.
Remember, A young man lost his life. Another person has to live with this horrible incident and all most of you want to do is place blame....try praying for everyone involved and thanking God this wasn't your child or you who was the driver. It could happen to anyone! Put yourself in both parties shoes. A little compassion would be nice.'m quite sure that every single person involved in this horrible accident is broken & forever changed.

Posted by I'm Asian
a resident of Castlewood
on Nov 18, 2015 at 3:00 pm

When did this conversation turn to pointing fingers at Ethnic groups? I'm sure there have been quite a few people who are of Ethnic backgrounds that have caused accidents in Pleasanton but I can name some names of some who are not Asian, Indian or Hispanic that are high profile cases, ones that have had people die due to their recklessness. So talk about people as people not from where they came from because it's irrelevant.

Posted by Prayerful
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Nov 18, 2015 at 4:12 pm

According to the new press release, the driver was NOT at fault. The young man crossed 30 feet away from the crosswalk. I think all of you who automatically blamed the driver should be ashamed. There are TWO tragedies at hand. One, a young man lost his life from running in front of a car. His family, friends & this community, are heartbroken, wondering how to move on... Second, the man who struck him...had anyone even thought of his pain? He will have to live with this for the rest of his life...what must he be going through? People need to quit jumping to conclusions and placing blame. Clearly you were all wrong.. I ask God to lift BOTH families up.. Help them both in easing their pain, grant forgiveness, grant peace.. and assist in healing them BOTH!

Posted by Brit
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Nov 18, 2015 at 5:09 pm

When I moved here from the UK, I immediately noticed how dark the streets are in Pleasanton and the rest of the tri-valley, compared to home. Perhaps it the effect of modern LED lights that cast a narrower light, or the sparse placement of street lights along the sidewalks that can contribute to scenarios like this.

I am always extra, extra vigilant driving around at night, simply because I am making maneuvers into great pools of darkness and straining to see who's at the sidewalk ready to cross the road.

This tragic even needs to prompt the city into a full review of pedestrian safety. I don't know the full facts of this case, but in general, I really feel the street lighting situation needs to improve both to minimize driver/pedestrian incidents like this and to improve the general safety levels for people walking around at night fearing of being mugged.

Posted by Driver
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 2, 2015 at 11:16 pm

To "pleasanton was nice forty years ago" - you are an ignorant racist pig who has no morals - so are the 74 people who "liked" their comment. I am surprised Pleasanton Weekly is allowing this post to stay up and not removed. If it does not get removed, you can bet it will make it to Youtube, the media, etc.

Posted by Damon
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Dec 2, 2015 at 11:37 pm


Driver, you took the words right out of my mouth. No matter what the topic, "Pleasanton was nice forty years ago" always shows up to promote his bigoted and racist views on the matter - and amazingly the Pleasanton Weekly lets his bigoted and racist comments pass. Why? I have no idea. It can't be that they're shy about deleting comments because we know that they have no hesitation about doing that to other comments. In fact, I'll bet that your and my comments here get deleted by the PW before "Pleasanton was nice"s.

I believe that the NAACP in Hayward complained that the PW was allowing racist and bigoted comments about Ahmadi on this website. Perhaps they had a point. I'm going to start copying and collecting comments posted by "Pleasanton was nice" that I see here for forwarding to the Hayward NAACP so that they have a nice documented collection that may come in handy someday in the future.

(P.S.: As for the fact that he got 74 "up" votes, that means nothing. I once was about to comment on a post that just appeared, and to my amazement it received dozens of up votes within minutes before I even finished my short reply. It's quite apparent that there must be ways to game the voting system. I'm also sure that the PW knows that the system is being abused and - no surprise - lets it pass.)

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