LOS ANGELES — An off-duty sheriff’s detective was struck and killed by a car after she helped an elderly woman cross a street in Los Angeles, authorities said.

“She was an outstanding detective. She would lead by example through her act of kindness.” — Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva

The accident occurred Sunday in the Valley Village neighborhood as Detective Amber Leist was returning to her car after assisting the woman, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.

Leist, 41, dies at a hospital, Villanueva said.

“She was an outstanding detective,” he said at a press conference. “She would lead by example through her act of kindness.”

She Is Survived by Her Parents and Two Sons

Leist, a 12-year veteran of the department, was assigned to the West Hollywood station. She is survived by her parents and two sons.

Leist was at a red light waiting to make a left turn when she saw the elderly woman fall to the ground, Villanueva said. She parked her car and ran to help the woman cross the street. On her way back, Leist was struck by a vehicle, he said.

The driver stopped and tried to help the deputy, Villanueva said.

The Los Angeles Police Department is investigating. No further details were immediately released.

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