Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

March 22, 2013

Locals tackle driver after he flees multiple crash scenes


Mineral Wells Index

— By CHRIS AGEE

A local man was arrested Tuesday after police say he crashed his vehicle three separate times, ultimately abandoning the vehicle and fleeing on foot.

The incident happened shortly after 3 p.m., according to reports, and officers initially arrived at the scene of a hit-and-run involving a white pickup truck and a fire hydrant.

The reporting officer stated he arrived at the scene, in the 700 block of S.E. 25th Avenue, and saw the 2012 Ford F250 facing the wrong way in the road along with an overturned fire hydrant across the street.

Witnesses at the scene told police the other driver left the scene, crashed at a different location, and fled on foot.

Crash reports indicate Victor John Lutz, 21, of Mineral Wells, was driving the truck south in the right lane of S.E. 25th Avenue as the other driver, later identified as Mauricio Velazquez, 33, of Mineral Wells, was stopped at an intersection.

Police say Velazquez pulled into traffic in front of Lutz, causing a collision and damaging the front left of both vehicles.

Supplemental reports show Velazquez struck the truck first, then backed up and hit the fire hydrant.

At that point, police say he drove across a nearby parking lot and yard, striking a fence and gas meter in the 2400 block of S.E. 9th Street.

Velazquez continued his attempt to flee, police said, and ultimately struck another fence and a shed in the 1800 block of S.E. 9th Street before fleeing on foot.

Upon their arrival, additional officers responded to the 2000 block of S.E 12th Street, where they found two men restraining another man who fit the general description of the suspect.

According to reports, officers then identified Velazquez and took him into custody.

One responding officer reported the suspect exuded a strong smell of alcohol.

Police determined Velazquez had been drinking and listed it among several factors contributing to the collision.

Other factors include failure to control speed and failure to yield right-of-way.