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PCAO: Insufficient evidence to charge man in crash that seriously injured Tucson child

Catalina Rodriguez, her pregnant mother and grandfather were hit by a pick-up truck in the...
Catalina Rodriguez, her pregnant mother and grandfather were hit by a pick-up truck in the crosswalk at Irvington Road and Ninth Avenue in Tucson on April 16, 2021.(KOLD News 13)
Published: Sep. 3, 2021 at 10:53 AM MST|Updated: Sep. 3, 2021 at 1:55 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The Pima County Attorney’s Office said due to a lack of evidence, it cannot prosecute an elderly man accused of being involved in a crash that left a Tucson child seriously injured.

On April 16, 2-year-old Catalina Rodriguez, her pregnant mother and grandfather were hit by a pick-up truck in the crosswalk at Irvington Road and Ninth Avenue.

Catalina’s family said one-quarter of her brain had to be removed and doctors have warned she may not make it to adulthood.

According to the PCAO, the Tucson Police Department later questioned an elderly man who was stopped while driving a truck that matched the description of the vehicle that left the scene of the crash.

The man said he didn’t recall driving the route, explaining he made daily trips from Green Valley to visit his wife in St. Mary’s Hospital. His claims were corroborated by ICU entry stickers, St. Mary’s staff and his wife’s subsequent death certificate, the PCAO said in a news release.

The PCAO named the man in a release that was sent out on Friday, Sept. 3, but KOLD News 13 is not identifying him because he is not facing any charges.

The PCAO said the TPD found no evidence of any attempt by the man to cover up any damage to his truck. Also, tower data did not show that the man’s cell phone was near the area of the crash on that day.

The PCAO said no witnesses can identify the man as the driver of the vehicle. Also, the damage to the man’s truck was not as significant as what would be expected considering the nature of the crash being investigated.

The PCAO later clarified they are not ruling the man out as a suspect, but they do not have enough evidence to prosecute a case against him.

KOLD is reaching out to the TPD to see what its next steps will be.

Anyone with information about the crash is asked to go to www.88CRIME.org or call 911 or 88-CRIME.

Copyright 2021 KOLD News 13. All rights reserved.