Police grateful to 2 witnesses for help tracking down driver in fatal hit-and-run

Jorge Luis Valdez, 31, arrested; 1 woman killed, 1 critically injured

SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio police said they're grateful to two witnesses who helped them track down a driver involved in a deadly hit-and-run Wednesday night on the near West Side.

Anna Marie Gonzalez, 49, was hit by a pickup and killed. Adrienne De La Pena, 38, suffered critical injuries.

Police said the women were crossing the 1800 block of West Martin Street around 9:30 p.m., when they were run down by the pickup driven by 31-year-old Jorge Luis Valdez.  

"A Ford truck struck them," said Jennifer Rodriguez, a police spokeswoman. "The truck then fled the scene without rendering any aid."

Shortly after the crash, officers were able to track down Valdez thanks to two witnesses who followed him and gave the officers information that led them to the suspect.

"It's unknown why this driver fled the scene, but he did have a responsibility by striking those two victims. He did have a responsibility to stop," Rodriguez said.

Valdez was arrested on charges of failure to stop and render aid-serious bodily injury and failure to stop and render aid-death, officials said.

Police said the help the witnesses provided proved to be extremely valuable. But they recommend that people simply report what they see rather than chasing down criminals.

"We certainly don't want anything bad to happen to you," Rodriguez said. "But we are grateful in this situation, that the witnesses were able to give us that viable information."

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