‘I did not see woman on the road’

The dri­ver in a vi­ral video that shows a car ap­par­ent­ly run­ning over a woman who lay on the road fol­low­ing an epilep­tic seizure said yes­ter­day, he saw no sign that any­one was in the path of his ve­hi­cle.

While pub­lic out­rage over the in­ci­dent has been swift, the dri­ver in­sist­ed peo­ple were on­ly fo­cus­ing on half of the sto­ry.

 

The 47-year-old from San Juan asked not to be iden­ti­fied, say­ing that since the in­ci­dent he has been re­ceiv­ing death threats.

He told Guardian Me­dia that said he sim­ply did not see Si­mone Fer­reira ly­ing on the road­way.

The dri­ver said: “They keep say­ing I run over the woman’s head and the woman’s hand. That is not so. The on­ly thing I could tell you I run over is her bag. When I swing the cor­ner all I could see is some­thing like it’s garbage be­cause the garbage truck wasn’t far be­hind me, so all I felt was like I touch­ing some­thing like garbage with my wheel. The sun does al­so hit you straight in your eye at that time and the front of my car was high­er than the back com­ing over that in­cline.”

He added that Fer­reira was al­so for­tu­nate that on that day his ve­hi­cle was not work­ing prop­er­ly and there­fore he had to dri­ve slow­ly.

He in­sist­ed he would have felt if he ran over some­one.

“I am a dri­ver for al­most 30 years and I con­sid­er my­self a damn good dri­ver and I must feel if I roll over some­one, and if I roll over her head, she would have been dead. If I rolled over her hand it would have been bro­ken,” he added.

He said af­ter he felt some­thing by one of the wheels, he ma­noeu­vred around it and drove off. But it was then he felt some­thing touch the bumper of his ve­hi­cle. He said when he came out to in­spect, a woman told him about Fer­reira’s con­di­tion.

“I was the first per­son to pick her up from the ground and an­oth­er guy held her oth­er shoul­der and we put her on a step to sit down. She was in a daze the on­ly thing she told me is where she (was) liv­ing and that she was go­ing to work. I then asked some­one to call an am­bu­lance but they said the am­bu­lance was one hour away, I told them the safest idea was to take her to the health cen­ter, the guy who helped lift her up de­cid­ed to take her and she walked to the car and they took her to the hos­pi­tal.”

The dri­ver said at the time all Fer­reira had was a bruise on her face and el­bow.

He said since then he has been re­ceiv­ing death threats with peo­ple threat­en­ing to shoot him and burn his ve­hi­cle. He said in­stead of threat­en­ing him, those peo­ple should ac­com­pa­ny Fer­reira when she walks to work be­cause of her con­di­tion.

He said due to the threats he won’t be check­ing in on her and he will leave it up to the po­lice to do their work.

The dri­ver said he al­ready gave the po­lice a state­ment and they con­duct­ed a site vis­it.

The dri­ver is now ask­ing the pub­lic to watch all five videos of the in­ci­dent and to not be judge and ju­ry based on on­ly two videos.

Reporter: Akash Samaroo

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