BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — A tip to the Bakersfield Police Department’s crash investigation team helped identify the suspect in a hit-and-run that seriously injured a 3-year-old and a woman, according to a court document.
Vicente Rodriguez Ruiz, 67, was named by police last month as the driver in the June 1 crash and has not been located. The child suffered injuries including a skull fracture and the woman a broken leg and nerve damage to her right foot, according to the court filing.
On June 7, police received a call from someone who saw a surveillance image of the suspect vehicle released by investigators.
The caller reported the vehicle resembled a car parked on Betty Street in southeast Bakersfield, says the document filed by police. The caller said the 2005 gray Honda Accord had a dent in its hood and sent police a photo.
Officers went to the Betty Street address and the car wasn’t there. They spoke with the homeowner, Eliseo Delgadillo, who acknowledged his brother-in-law, Ruiz, owned a gray Honda, the report says.
Delgadillo told police Ruiz may be visiting family in Mexico and gave them his number.
In the presence of officers, Delgadillo called Ruiz and told him police were there and had questions about his car, according to the document. He asked Ruiz where he was.
Ruiz only said he was “far away,” the report says.
Police tried calling Ruiz multiple times but the calls went to voicemail. It later appeared Ruiz had blocked the department’s number, according to the report.
The Accord was found June 10 in the area of Cottonwood Road and East Hosking Avenue. It had been partially stripped, police said.
Ruiz is wanted on suspicion of felony hit-and-run resulting in injuries, driving without a license and failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk.
Anyone with information about the whereabouts of Ruiz is asked to call the Bakersfield Police Department at 661-327-7111 or the department’s Traffic Detail at 661-326-3967