Neighbor reeling from close call after pickup truck crashes into duplex next door

Driver of pickup was running from officers, police say

Both sides of a duplex were decimated by a truck that went out of control and rolled. Police say the driver was trying to get away from them at the time.
Both sides of a duplex were decimated by a truck that went out of control and rolled. Police say the driver was trying to get away from them at the time. (KSAT 12 News)

SAN ANTONIO – After a sleepless night, Morgan Van Sycle got quite the eye opener at what used to be a duplex next door to his South Side home.

The duplex, which had been vacant for some time, was decimated when an out-of-control pickup barreled through the duplex late Sunday night.

“It shook the house. It shook the house,” he said. “We didn’t know what was going on.”

Van Sycle lost his mailbox in the process.

The truck also rolled over and sheared off the front of both sides of the duplex, located in the 500 block of Gillette Avenue.

San Antonio police said the 19-year-old driver was running from them at the time after other trouble in the area that happened after 10 p.m.

Police said the driver was with a 18-year-old friend who was involved in a child custody dispute with his ex.

At some point during that disagreement, police said either the driver of the truck or his friend pulled out a gun and shot a 43-year-old man who tried to intervene.

“He was shot, as I said, five times, two times in the leg, twice in the buttocks, once in the arm,” said SAPD Capt. Eric Hightower. “It was essentially an extended family disturbance.”

The shooting victim was rushed to a hospital. After the crash, the truck driver also was taken away in an ambulance. Police said he was in critical condition.

“They pulled him out from underneath that tin and brought him out here. I thought he was dead,” Van Sycle said. “I couldn’t even tell what kind of vehicle it was ‘cause it was dark and it was laying on its side.”

The man involved in the child custody dispute, meanwhile, took off with the baby, police said.

Police arrested that man who they identified as Kenneth Obaya, 18.

The child later was found safe and turned over to a relative.

Van Sycle is amazed he also is safe, given all that happened. The truck narrowly missed his home.

“It could have hit the dirt and whoosh, and come that way, you know?,” he said.

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About the Authors:

Katrina Webber was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas.

Tim has been a photojournalist and video editor at KSAT since 1998. He came to San Antonio from Lubbock, where he worked in TV and earned his bachelor's degree in Electronic Media and Communication from Texas Tech University. Tim has won a handful of awards and has earned a master's in Strategic Communication and Innovation from Tech as well.