What would you do if you saw someone hit a child in the street and then drive off?
A group of parents found themselves in that situation Friday afternoon near Hamlin Middle School.
Jesse Mesa believes he was in the right place at the right time.
“There were three students crossing the street, three boys, when I saw the second one get struck by a vehicle,” Mesa said. “My daughter and I couldn’t believe what happened. I said, ‘Did that just happen?’ She said, ‘Yeah dad, that kid got hit.’ So they got up and walked to the curb, but then the vehicle that hit them decides to take off.”
Mesa said what happened after that was a matter of “fight or flight” and his parental instincts took over.
He followed that hit-and-run driver through back roads for more than a mile before that suspect, 28-year-old Wilfredo Faz, was stopped by police and arrested for driving while intoxicated.
“You know, it’s somebody else’s child. His parent wasn’t there, so you know somebody had to do something. If I wouldn’t have gone then he would’ve got away,” Mesa said.
Corpus Christi Police are still investigating the accident, and that driver will likely face additional charges ranging from hit and run, failure to render aid and accident causing injury or death.
CCISD has crossing guards present during school zone hours, but only at elementary school campuses. This is something Mesa would like to see change in the near future.
“She leaves at 3:30 which is 30 minutes before Hamlin Middle School gets out, so I’d like to see a crossing guard there,” Mesa said.
CCISD Police Chief Kirby Warnke said those adjustments are already in the works.
“There’s a crossing guard that serves one of our elementary campuses in the area, and we’re looking at tweaking the hours to see if we can broaden the coverage,” Warnke said.
Witnesses said the student hit by Faz was checked out by medics at the scene and that he did not suffer severe injuries.