Both the suspect vehicle and suspect are now in the Austin Police Department's (APD) custody from yesterday's fatal crash incident that occurred in the 600 block of W. Ben White. Suspect Darrell Smitty, 52, booking photo is pictured below. He's being charged with an accident involving injury and is on a $100,000 bond.
Note: Booking photo is from a 2016 arrest.
The preliminary investigation shows that a pedestrian, identified as 40-year-old Ernesto Garcia, was walking westbound near a bus stop in the 600 block of W. Ben White Service Road. The suspect driver was westbound on the service road in the right turn lane. The suspect drove straight through the intersection, onto the sidewalk, between the bus stop and a Capital Metro bus that had stopped to pick up passengers, striking the pedestrian.
Ernesto Garcia was pronounced deceased at the scene.
The truck came to a stop in a driveway the driver walked to where Garcia lay, then walked back to his truck and drove away.
This is Austin's 39th fatal traffic crash and 40th traffic fatality of 2018. At this time in 2017, there were 34 fatal traffic crashes and 26 traffic fatalities. This case is still being investigated. Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the APD Vehicular Homicide Unit Detectives at 512-974-5594. You can also submit tips by downloading APD’s mobile app, Austin PD, for free on iPhone and Android.
These statements are based on the initial assessment of the fatal crash and investigation is still pending. Fatality information may change.
Communications and Public Information Office
301 W. 2nd Street, Austin, TX 78701