Officials ID man killed in fall from Palos Verdes Estates cliff

Authorities Tuesday identified a man who was killed when he and three friends fell about 300 feet from a cliff in Palos Verdes Estates in what authorities are calling an apparent accident.

The fall was reported at 4:42 a.m. Monday in the 1400 block of Paseo Del Mar, said Los Angeles County Fire Department Dispatch Supervisor Martin Rangel.

Jerardo Huitzil, 25, died at the scene, according to the Los Angeles County coroner's office. He was from Los Angeles, Palos Verdes Estates police Capt. Steve Barber told City News Service.

Fire department helicopters were sent to assist in the rescue effort, Rangel said.

According to authorities, two males and two females fell. The circumstances of the fall were under investigation. Barber said the preliminary investigation indicates the fall was an apparent accident.

Oe of the survivors, Vincent Avila, suffered moderate injuries but was able to seek help. All three were expected to survive.

Avila, 25, of Los Angeles, is recovering at Harbor UCLA Medical Center with broken ribs and minor kidney damage.

According to Avila, he and three friends went to the cliffs Sunday night to go hiking and hang out. One of the friends had to go to the bathroom outside in the dark and she slipped and fell down the cliff onto the rocky beach below. As the three friends were trying to find her off the edge of cliff, they too slipped and fell.

Avila's mother, Irma Avila, said her son told her he thought Huitzil was knocked out during the fall. He didn't realize the man had died.

Vincent Avila, who lost his shoes and his phone during the fall, managed to climb back up from the beach below to find help.

"It's extremely dangerous; there's no fencing in the area," county fire Capt. Wade said. "There's sloping to where it just goes off to a sheer cliff, and the majority of the area here is very unstable, very dangerous if you get close to the edge of this cliff without any sort of protection."