Boynton man faces homicide charge while driving stolen car, kills Lake Worth Beach man

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A 40-year-old Boynton Beach man faces a drive-by homicide charge after investigators say he stole a car from a repair shop, then punched and killed a man riding a bicycle past a house in Lake Worth Beach.

Corey Bell was speeding in the stolen Toyota sedan on a street near Lake Osborne on March 11 when the car hit a mailbox, lost control and struck 74-year-old James Beloian, according to an arrest report from the office of the Palm Beach County Sheriff released Tuesday.

Beloian, who PBSO said lived elsewhere in Lake Worth Beach, died at the scene.

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County Judge Ted Booras set Bell’s bail at $500,000 during a hearing Tuesday at the Palm Beach County Jail. The Palm Beach County Public Defender’s Office represented Bell. As a policy, it does not comment on open cases.

The accident happened around 2 p.m. on March 11 near South 12th Avenue and Cochran Drive, a neighborhood of single-family homes on the eastern shore of Lake Osborne.

CCTV video showed Bell and a passenger getting out of the Toyota Matrix and leaving the area without attempting to provide assistance to Beloain, according to the report. Two teenage passengers remained at the scene but did not identify the driver.

According to the PBSO report, an auto repair shop reported the sedan stolen four days before the crash.

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An employee who reported the vehicle stolen identified Bell as the person who took the vehicle. But no immediate action was taken because neither the caller, the employee, nor the car owner could provide the vehicle identification number, PBSO said.

Investigators say on March 11, the Toyota was seen traveling south on Cochran when it crossed the northbound lane and left the roadway. Bell lost control of the vehicle as it attempted to turn left and veered onto the grass.

The car hit a wooden post and then hit Beloian, who was riding his bike near the northeast corner of a building, the report said.

The vehicle operator allegedly told investigators that Bell was the person in the surveillance video.

Further investigation showed he was driving without a valid license, according to the arrest report.

Julius Whigham II is a criminal justice and public safety reporter for The Palm Beach Post. You can reach him at jwhigham@pbpost.com and follow him on Twitter at @JuliusWhigham. Help support our work: Subscribe today.

This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: PBSO arrests Boynton man in March hit-and-run accident in Lake Worth

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