As Carol Robnett looked at the surveillance video in our news van she started to tremble. The surveillance video, from an OCTA bus, showed a horrible hit and run accident she had seen for herself. Watching the surveillance video for the first time brought it all back.
Back on April 23rd, from a bus stop at Chapman and Beach in Stanton, she saw a pickup truck hit 24-year-old Jeff Bell, drag him and then take off. Bell was seriously hurt. He had burns over 20% of his body. It took 38 staples to close the gash on his head.
Robnett says she thought he was dead.
Bell's father, Michael, says "we're all angry." He says his son is high-functioning autistic and add he was going to work when the hit and run happened. Says Bell, "He's angry that this happened to him, which is understandable...
He did not see the truck. He remembers being under the truck, unfortunately." The elder Bell says he understands accidents, "but making a conscious decision to drag someone 100 feet across the asphalt and drive away, without helping him, leaving him for dead, that's no accident."
Before our interview with Carol Robnett authorities said they had no information on the truck driver except he was in a mid-90's teal-colored GMC pickup truck.
Robnett told us he look to be in his 20's or 30's. He wore a hat. She wasn't sure if he was white or latino. And, she says after the impact he had a shocked look on his face, but "he just kept going."
Robnett didn't stop to help after the hit and run. She was on her way to a hospital to be with a daughter about to give birth. That was first and foremost on her mind. Now, after seeing the video and knowing Bell is alive, she wishes she had stopped to help and now wants to do what she can. She says the driver "needs to turn himself in!" We connected her with the OC Sheriffs Department so she could help. Now, investigators say if you can help call them. They want to find the driver.