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Sanger Family struggles with medical bills after 5-year-old hit by car

Monday, July 22, 2013

A Sanger family is trying to cope tonight with mounting medical bills after a drunk driver slammed his truck into their young child.

Investigators say the crash happened in a neighborhood near J Street and Edgar.

Five-year-old Santos Garcia is going through a lot of pain. He doesn't like to move much but his family says they feel lucky he is alive. Now they are struggling to pay all his medical bills.

Santos Garcia has several fractures in his pelvis. His family says he's in so much pain he never wants to leave this couch. Older sister Vanessa Coughlin is haunted by the images of the crash that left him this way.

The victim's sister, Vanesssa Coughlin, witnessed the crash.

"Have you ever heard metal against metal? It sounded like that but being scraped. It was an ugly sound." Coughlin said.

Sanger police say on Thursday Manuel Nevarez was driving in a neighborhood near Santos house when he swerved and slammed into the little boy who was riding his tricycle near the curb.

"The thing that makes it the hardest is that he didn't stop. He tried to keep going like he didn't do anything wrong," Coughlin said.

The small red and white tricycle was flattened by the impact.

"The first words he screamed was I don't want to go to the hospital," Coughlin said.

Sixty-nine-year-old Nevarez was arrested and booked at the Fresno County Jail for one felony count of driving under the influence and causing injury. Family members say Santos will need a wheelchair for about eight weeks.

Neighbors are helping out and often bring over dinner, but everyone is worried about the medical bills

Police are reminding people, never drive drunk.

"It's great risk no matter where you are, if in the neighborhood, on the freeway on a busy street you never know what may be in your way and obviously it is against the law," Cpl. Jaimy Gaines with the Sanger Police said.

Sanger Rotary Club has actually stepped in to try helping the family with those bills.

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sanger, local, mariana jacob
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