According to Pinal County authorities, a suspect and vehicle have been identified in the hit-and-run accident that killed a skateboarder over the weekend.
The skateboarder, 18-year-old Giovanni Saucedo, died late Monday night after he was critically injured in the crash Sunday night in San Tan Valley.
The Pinal County Sheriff’s Office alleges it has been able to locate the vehicle involved in the accident and has also identified and interviewed the suspect. Paul Babeu of the Pinal County Sheriff’s office said they were tipped off to the vehicle and the suspect by the public. According to Babeau, while the detectives have not yet made an arrest, it is imminent. Babeau also said the suspect confessed to hitting something, but told investigators that he thought he had hit an animal. “He later knew of the hit-and-run, and he admitted that he should have turned himself in,” Babeu said.
Additional Work to be Done
Detectives are still serving search warrants and looking for additional evidence to aid in their investigation. “What’s telling is we have, initially, a piece of the vehicle, about 6 inches by 6 inches, that matches up like a puzzle piece to the vehicle,” Babeau said. “The issue here now is even if it’s not this person’s ‘fault,’ … they’re going to get charged with a serious felony [because he left the scene].”
It’s still unclear whether the suspect will face a class 2 or a class 3 felony. “That vehicle and the driver had a lawful obligation to stop, to call 911 and to try to render aid to the injured young man,” Babeu said. “He failed to to that, just took off. People sometimes, when they’re under stress, make very bad decisions and this is clearly one of them. This is a serious criminal offense.”
Detectives still have yet to determine if other factors, including possible impairment, played a role in the collision.