Victor Morales, 21, is being held on $250,000 bond, accused of running over and killing an 82-year-old woman as he was backing up a van at the C-Town Supermarket on Park Street in Hartford.
According to police, Morales was backing up the van on July 11 when he went over the curb and hit Maria Santos, pinning her down.
Lt. Brian Foley, of the Hartford Police Department, said emergency responders had to use a forklift to remove the van and free Santos.
“It was a difficult situation for everybody,” Foley said after the crash.
Police said that Morales did not see Santos and ran inside the store to alert a manager that an accident had occurred.
Santos was transported to the ICU at St. Francis Hospital, where she was originally listed in critical condition. She was updated to stable condition a week later but succumbed to her injuries.
Police had released Morales on a promise to appear, but he was then taken into custody on another warrant, believed to be related to his immigration status.
Authorities have also said that Morales did not appear to have a driver’s license and was carrying a Mexican passport. Morales’ manager also said that he did not know why Morales was in the truck and should not have been making deliveries.
“Our prayers and thoughts are with the victim, Mrs. Santos. This is nothing more than a tragic accident. My client did call 911, did go to his employer to render assistance. At no time did he try to flee from the scene of the accident,” said Corey Brinson, Morales’ attorney.
Morales was charged with reckless driving, evading responsibility, unsafe backing, operating without a license and driving on a sidewalk. He has also been charged with negligent homicide with a motor vehicle.
Police said he could face additional charges.