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Hit-and-run driver crashes through veteran's fence

Posted at 5:12 PM, Dec 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-24 19:36:18-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A local Vietnam-era veteran wants to know who drove through his fence earlier this week.

Lino Rivas says he thanks God he wasn’t hurt, and believes he’s lucky to be alive after a pick-up truck drove through his fence. He’s hoping the driver takes responsibility so he can get it fixed.

Rivas enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1972, and in 1974 he was hurt while stationed in South Korea.

“They should never send a Texan to Korea,” said Rivas. “It was 40 degrees below (zero) and I slipped off a little hill, landed on my right knee and fractured it.”

Rivas spent more than a year recovering and was discharged with full disability.

Earlier this week, a pick-up driving east on McArdle swerved across both lanes of traffic, jumped a curb and crashed through his fence.

“It almost hit my bedroom, (it missed) by about six feet,” he said.

Amazingly, Rivas slept through the whole thing. The next morning, his wife found a card from a police officer.

“I called it and they said it was a hit and run and that they were working on the case,” said Rivas. “They have the license plate number because it was connected to the grill in my backyard.”

The front of the truck with the license plate is still in his yard, along with a gaping hole in Rivas’ fence.

Rivas says neighbors told him the driver called a friend who picked them up. He wants that driver to take responsibility.

“I just want to find out if he had insurance so they can repair my damaged fence,” said Rivas. “Maybe about $1,000 to fix it.”

On a fixed income, $1,000 is something Rivas doesn’t have. He says without the driver’s insurance, he can’t afford to fix his fence.

Rivas says he forgives the driver, he only wants them to do the right thing.

“We’ve got to do the right thing,” said Rivas. “If it happened to my neighbor or somebody else, I would want them to get their fence fixed.”

Rivas may forgive the driver, but don’t count on Corpus Christi police doing the same. A spokesperson says the department is investigating the incident. So far, no arrests have been made or citations issued.