Driver Involved in DUI Hit and Run Crash Was Deported 15 Times
A DUI suspect who was involved in a hit-and-run crash in San Ysidro that severely injured a 6-year-old boy had been deported from the U.S. at least 15 times, officials said. According to a news report in the San Diego Union Tribune, Constantino Banda-Acosta, 38, was last deported Jan. 18 with at least 14 prior cases since 2002. Police say Banda-Acosta was speeding west on Camino de La Plaza and ran a stop sign on Dairy Mart Road, slamming his pickup truck into a Honda Accord. He then fled the scene.
Boy Suffers Critical Head Injury
In that Honda Accord, was a family driving home after a day trip to Disneyland. They were just a block away from home at the time of the crash. Six-year-old Lennox Lake suffered a critical head injury in the crash. Doctors say they are cautiously optimistic that the boy will make a full recovery. The family has set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for medical bills and other expenses.
Border Patrol agents arrested Banda-Acosta shortly after the crash on suspicion of felony hit-and-run with injury, DUI causing injury and driving without a valid license. ICE officials told the Union Tribune that 15 removals is a “significant number” indicating an “egregious immigration violation.” The boy and his family will be eligible to receive assistance from the Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE), an office created by President Donald Trump in an executive order to help victims of crimes committed by undocumented immigrants. We wish Lennox the very best for a speedy and full recovery.
Violation of Laws
Based on this news report, it appears that the driver was not only under the influence and ran a stop sign at a street intersection, but also left the scene of a major injury crash. Under California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a), it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. It is also against the law to leave the scene of an injury or fatal crash (California Vehicle Code Section 20001). Motorists are required to stop immediately at the scene of the crash, exchange information with other parties involved and most importantly, obtain assistance for the injured victims.
Justice and Compensation for Victims
We are relieved to hear that this family is eligible to receive government assistance. In addition, they may also be able to receive monetary support through the uninsured motorist clause of their own insurance policy. An experienced San Diego personal injury lawyer can help them better understand how their insurance policy works especially in a case where the at-fault driver doesn’t have a valid license or insurance coverage.