Charlie Frank Kimball of Miami, Florida was critically injured on Monday in a hit-and-run accident, news outlets are reporting. Police are still searching for the driver of the hit-and-run vehicle, which is believed to be a 2007-2008 blue or purple Ford Taurus. Meanwhile, Kimball, 70, remains unresponsive at Jackson Memorial Hospital. It is not yet known whether he will survive his injuries.
News reports indicate that Kimball, who is legally blind, was out for a walk when he was struck (family members told the press that Kimball often goes for walks by himself, normally without incident). The accident occurred at around 9:15 at night on Monday near the intersections of Northwest 7th Avenue and Northwest 19th Street in Miami. It is not clear whether the driver exited the vehicle or stopped after hitting Kimball. Kimball reportedly went into surgery today as doctors attempted to save his life, though the type of injuries he is suffering from were not specified.
“I was devastated,” Kimball’s adult daughter told the press following the accident. “And then I was devastated to find out the car just left… it would give us in the family a lot of peace [if the hit-and-run driver] came forward. It’s just an accident, just come forward so we can be able to put the pieces together.”
Several surveillance cameras from the nearby University of Miami apparently caught the hit-and-run. Law enforcement officials have also stated that a witness has come forward with information. “We have video of what happened after [the crash], which was the vehicle leaving,” commented one Miami police officer. Authorities and Kimball’s family hope that the video and the witness testimony will be enough to find the driver.
Kimball’s injury was not the only car-based crime in the Miami area this week. Toddler Daniel Rivero of Hialeah is making headlines today after he was found safe on the side of the road. The car he had been in, a silver Mitsubishi Montero, was carjacked with him inside after his parents stopped to buy ice cream. Police are still searching for the vehicle, as well as the man who stole it.
According to news reports, the carjacking occurred near the intersection of Northwest 54th Street and Northwest 37th Avenue in Hialeah. The 3-year-old’s parents had stopped to purchase ice cream from a truck vendor, apparatly as a reward for the boy’s good behavior. When they exited the car, a waiting carjacker allegedly took the driver’s seat and left with their SUV and child. It is not clear whether the man knew that there was a child in the vehicle.
Following the carjacking, the Hialeah police department launched an investigation involving 40 officers and helicopters to recover the boy. Their worries for the child’s safety turned out to be unnecessary: Diego was dropped off at a TD Bank located at Northwest 57th Avenue and 7th Street, safe and sound. The FBI has posted a $5000 reward for information leading to the carjacker’s capture. Authorities apparently believe that the perpetrator is 48-year-old Pedro Luis Valdez, who is also wanted for robbing two Flaglar street banks.