UPDATE: Man charged in hit-and-run that injured 3 pedestrians - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Man charged in hit-and-run that injured 3 pedestrians

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Police are still investigating a hit-and-run that injured three pedestrians in downtown Austin.

According to police, 53-year-old Dennis Clay drove his 1997 Ford F250 onto the sidewalk as he was making a turn in the intersection of Cesar Chavez and San Jacinto and struck three pedestrians. Police say Clay continued driving on Cesar Chavez. He was eventually stopped in the 600 block of Cesar Chavez.

Clay has been charged with driving while intoxicated and three counts of failure to stop and render aid.




Ferdinand Febles waits tables at Casa Chapala, the Mexican restaurant across the street from the Four Seasons on Cesar Chavez.  Saturday night a little after 9, he noticed some of his customers were looking out of the window in horror.

"They had all gotten up and there was a commotion.  The street was crazy and I asked one of the guys at my table what happened.  He said that he saw a white truck make the corner and he heard 'thump thump' and then he saw a body there and a body there," Febles said.

Austin Police caught up with that white truck a few blocks away at I-35 and Cesar Chavez.  APD tells us the driver jumped the sidewalk and hit 2 men and a woman who were walking along the sidewalk.

The driver kept going.  When police caught the suspect minutes later, they performed the field sobriety test on him and they say the man was drunk.

Angela Tidwell with the state office for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (M.A.D.D.) says the problem isn't getting any better.

"In 2012 there was an increase in alcohol related accidents in Austin by 93% so nearly half of our accidents, the fatalities in Austin were alcohol-impaired drivers and it's still on the rise," Tidwell said.

Tidwell says Texas leads the nation in drunk driving and Travis County is in the top 5 counties in Texas with the most alcohol-related crashes.

"They made the wrong decision and got behind the wheel after drinking and we have public service announcements all over the place...billboards, so it's not that we don't try to get the message out there, they know the message is out there...they just need to listen," Tidwell said.

APD tells us the 3 victims were taken to Brackenridge hospital and they're in stable condition.

"Well I think it's sad.  Especially the fact that he was willing to just run and not try to render assistance.  You know, the world's crazy enough as it is...you're out having a good time.  Let someone else drive if you're drunk," Febles said.

So far, APD hasn't released the name of the driver but they did say he's charged with 3 counts of failure to stop and render aid... and DWI.

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