Driver Pleads Guilty to Running Down Pedestrian
Posted June 11, 2007 12:25 p.m. EDT
Updated June 11, 2007 6:43 p.m. EDT
Raleigh, N.C. — A Raleigh man pleaded guilty Monday to trying to run over a pedestrian who yelled at him to slow down.
Doroteo Calles Hernandez, 23, of 605-A Charleston Road, pleaded guilty to assault with intent to kill, hit-and-run and driving while impaired. He was originally charged with attempted murder but pleaded guilty to the assault charge as part of a deal with prosecutors.
David Barber, 51, told police he and his girlfriend were walking their dog in the area of Jeffries Street and Dana Drive in southwest Raleigh on March 17 when a vehicle sped past and he yelled at the driver to slow down.
The driver circled the block and returned to run him over, Barber said.
The driver left the scene, but not before losing control and hitting a tree. The damaged car left a trail of leaked fluid from the scene of the attack to Hernandez's apartment less than a mile away.
Barber suffered two bones broken in his leg and said he continues to undergo physical therapy.
Still, Barber and his girlfriend, Cissy McKissick, said in court Monday that they have no ill will toward Hernandez and hope he turns his life around.
"Hopefully, he will get the help he needs to deal with his anger and any drinking problem he might have," Barber said. "He just was a good kid that did the absolute worst thing someone could do. And why he did that, he needs to figure that out. Everybody deserves one chance."
"I wish to let him know that I bear him no ill will and that I hope desperately that he doesn't allow this to be the pattern for his life," McKissick said.
Defense attorney Mike Klinkosum said Hernandez is a good person who made a bad choice.
"He got scared and he left and then he immediately came back, and one of the first things that he admitted to was that he was the driver of the car," Klinkosum said.
Superior Court Judge Paul Ridgeway sentenced Hernandez to 31 to 47 months in prison on all charges, with the sentences to be served at the same time.
Federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials have placed a detainer on Hernandez, who is in the country illegally. After his prison sentence is over, ICE agents will deport him.