Lorena Rodriguez, One Other Injured in Multi-Vehicle Crash on I-35 in Waxahachie, TX
Waxahachie, TX -- December 26, 2021, 50-year-old Lorena Rodriguez and another woman were injured in a multi-vehicle crash on Interstate 35 in Waxahachie.
Authorities say the incident happened around 4:25 a.m. on I-35 near Cantrell Road. Preliminary investigation suggests a Chrysler 300 sedan was traveling northbound in the southbound lanes of the interstate, against traffic, when it collided head-on with a GMC Sierra pickup truck. After the impact the sedan rebounded and crashed into a Chevrolet Suburban, causing the large SUV to overturn on its side.
A second Suburban headed south veered away from the Chrysler as it passed, then swerved again to avoid the overturned Suburban and crashed into the back of the Sierra pickup.
Rodriguez and a 22-year-old woman, both passengers in the second Suburban, received serious injuries in the accident. Ten other listed participants in the crash were reportedly unhurt.
After the crashes the wrong-way driver reportedly fled the scene on foot before police arrived. A possible suspect has since been identified but was not confirmed by the time of the report's release.
No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Lorena Rodriguez Accident on I-35 in Waxahachie
The reports say the driver left the scene, but it also appears the police have the vehicle they were in. That's usually a good start for tracking hit-and-run drivers down since it's a key piece of evidence that often leads to an arrest once they've followed its paper trail back to its owner. Aside from the occasional stolen vehicle, the registrant is usually the suspect or at least knows who they are and where to find them. Sometimes it can take a while, but often when they have substantive evidence to work with police are able to find the offender; indeed, it may be that further investigation will confirm that their "possible suspect" is the right person to hold responsible.
Once they apprehend the right person, police can then see about why they took off after causing mayhem on the roadway. Investigators typically find hit-and-run drivers flee because they want to hide something from law enforcement, which may turn out to be the case here as well. Sometimes they want to hide illegal contraband like guns or drugs, while others know they have active arrest warrants already. In many cases the driver in question is intoxicated when they crash and in their compromised state decide it's best to run away.
Impairment seems plausible since the driver was traveling the wrong direction on the interstate when the wreck occurred, but nothing has been proven and it would need further investigation to know either way. If impairment was involved, though, the investigation could become a little more extensive as the source of the alcohol should be identified in case a local business violated dram shop law.
Before anyone can really know the specific reason the driver abandoned their car and the crash scene, though, police will have to catch them. With the vehicle in their possession, hopefully it's just a matter of time before someone either recognizes its description and puts two and two together OR authorities manage to trace it to the right suspect one way or another. In the meantime, the best way to ensure this reaches a proper resolution is for the community to remain vigilant and police to stay committed to catching the runaway driver. That means sharing any helpful information or developments between them and keeping eyes and ears open. It may take a little time, but I remain confident that if everyone cooperates that justice will be done.