Man in wheelchair fatally struck by SUV in northwest San Antonio

Driver not expected to face charges after fatal crash on Fredericksburg Road

Author: Katrina Webber, Reporter, kwebber@ksat.com
Published On: Sep 27 2013 08:10:10 AM CDT   Updated On: Sep 27 2013 06:46:59 PM CDT
Fredericksburg MV Ped
SAN ANTONIO -

A driver who hit and killed a man in a wheelchair in the middle of Fredericksburg Road is not expected to face any charges, according to accident investigators at the scene.

Sgt. Lloyd Jackel, with the San Antonio Police Department, said the woman who was behind the wheel told investigators she never even saw the man before she hit him.

The crash, in the 3500 block of Fredericksburg Road, happened before daylight — just before 7 a.m. Friday.

Jackel said he’s not sure whether the man was attempting to cross in the middle of the street, or was wheeling along with traffic at the time.

After the crash, his wheelchair remained lodged beneath the woman’s SUV, while his body, covered by a yellow tarp, lay behind it.

The driver, suffering from health problems triggered by the accident, was treated in an ambulance at the scene, police said.

Mike Garcia missed seeing the crash by seconds, but was alerted to the gruesome sight when he heard a loud boom.

"I did a double-take and then I saw the lights of the truck,” Garcia said. “(I said to myself) ‘Man, that ran over something. Wow. It's a body!’"

As of 11 a.m., the medical examiner’s office was not releasing the name of the dead man.

However, police said he appeared to be in his 60s.

Garcia said he believes the victim may be a man who he regularly sees at a bus stop nearby.

"He gets off up there by the Burger King, a couple of hundred yards from here, and comes down Fredericksburg,” he said. “I don't know if he crosses here, but I have seen him cross."

About an hour after the deadly accident, Santos Hernandez could be seen nearby, maneuvering his motorized chair through busy morning traffic in the middle of Fredericksburg Road.

"It's very dangerous, especially in those intersections. Cars go around 30 or 40 miles an hour,” he said, referring to the nearest crosswalks.

Hernandez said he takes the bus to his storage unit, then crosses in the middle of the street to get to the bus stop for his return trip home.

The nearest crosswalk, located about a quarter-mile from the bus stop, is too far away for him, Hernandez said.

He said he’d rather leave it “in God’s hands” and take his chances crossing in the middle of the street.

Police, however, said pedestrians should take safety into their own hands and use marked crosswalks.

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