Driver ploughs into six people in Walmart car park before fleeing carnage

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Driver ploughs into six people in Walmart car park before fleeing carnage
Driver ploughs into six people in Walmart car park before fleeing carnage

A driver has been taken into custody after his car ploughed into six migrant orchard workers in a Walmart car park.

The man, identified as 68-year-old Daniel Gonzalez, turned himself in to the Lincolnton Police Department on Monday evening, accompanied by several family members.

According to family members, Gonzalez claimed that he accidentally hit the gas pedal while attempting to park at Walmart. After the collision with the six men, he panicked and fled the scene on Sunday evening.

The incident occurred at 1.15pm and was captured on surveillance footage, which the Lincolnton Police released, initially describing the crash as an "intentional assault".

Driver ploughs into six people in Walmart car park before fleeing carnage eideziqkeiqhhinvThe man, identified as Daniel Gonzalez, turned himself in (Lincolnton PD)

All six victims, identified as Jorge A. Lopez, Zalapa M. Hermosillo, Jose L. Calderon, Luis D. Alcantar, Rodrigo M. Gutierrez-Tapia, and Santiago Baltazar, were rushed to a local hospital following the incident. Fortunately, police reported that none of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening, and the victims were released from the hospital late on Sunday.

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Maj. Brian Greene, interim chief of the Lincolnton Police Department, provided a detailed account of the crash, stating that Gonzalez's SUV turned right in front of a bus, as if it were about to park.

Driver ploughs into six people in Walmart car park before fleeing carnageHe was arrested after ploughing into six migrant orchard workers in North Carolina Walmart parking lot (WCCB)

However, at the last moment, it appeared to accelerate, jumping the curb and colliding with the workers and nearby trees. The SUV then exited the parking lot in the same direction it entered.

Following Gonzalez's arrest, he was charged with felony hit and run. The police mentioned that he had been cooperative during the investigation. He received a bond of $50,000.

Driver ploughs into six people in Walmart car park before fleeing carnageHis car appeared to accelerate, jumping the curb and colliding with the workers (WCCB)

The six injured workers were part of a group of 20 to 30 orchard workers who were on their weekly grocery trip at the time of the incident. They had travelled from the Knob Creek Orchard in Lawndale to the Walmart with the assistance of a bus. Authorities expressed gratitude to various departments and local Kia and Hyundai dealerships for their assistance in the investigation.

Lincolnton, a small town with a population of around 12,000 people, is located approximately 30 miles northwest of Charlotte.

Lucy Williamson

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