Court confrontation for pedi-cab assault suspect
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The man accused of intentionally driving his car into a pedi-cab full of people faced the victims Friday for the first time since the collision.
Juan Anthony Estrada, Jr., is charged with four counts of assault with a deadly weapon. Estrada claims he wasn't the driver who hit the pedi-cab. But he definitely had some unfriendly words with the victims in court, and now two of them have identified him as the man who injured them.
Jeff MacDonald confidently pointed at Estrada as the culprit who intentionally slammed his car into MacDonald's pedi-cab in April. MacDonald was picking up three women for a short ride when he argued with the driver of a dark green Honda. Before the pedi-cab and its passengers reached their destination, they saw the Honda waiting for them.
"And as I was pedaling, I felt the impact of the car," MacDonald said. "I could hear the car backing up and it slammed into the back of my pedi-cab."
MacDonald had tried to take back streets through the Tower District, but never quite lost the car and its driver. When they got hit, one of the passengers says she got a good look at who was behind the wheel.
"As soon as we came onto Hedges, he broadsided us on the side that I was sitting on and that's when I looked into the car and I saw him," said Amber Grubb.
Grubb and the other passengers asked us to obscure their faces because they fear for their safety. They say Estrada didn't just hit them once, but backed into the pedi-cab a couple more times. MacDonald suffered damage to his ankle and still can't drive his pedi-cab. Grubb is still wearing a walking boot, four weeks after her frightening experience.
"I was actually standing up, holding onto the side of the pedi-cab in the pedi-cab driver seat with my foot on the pedestal trying to get out and when he hit us that second time, it knocked me out and I twisted my foot," she said. "I broke my foot in the fall, thank you."
A judge decided Friday there is enough evidence for Estrada to stand trial, so he'll be back in court in a couple weeks.
MacDonald and Grubb both have ongoing medical bills and no insurance, so friends are holding a benefit for them this Sunday at Audie's Olympic tavern -- their destination on the night they got hurt.
crimetracker, court, fresno tower district, fresno, fresno county, local, corin hoggard
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