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New charges against Grand Island hit-and-run suspect

Teenage girl suffered broken spine in accident
Prosecutors filed additional assault and DUI charges against Luis Ruiz in connection with a hit...
Prosecutors filed additional assault and DUI charges against Luis Ruiz in connection with a hit & run accident Sept 5 in Grand Island.(Hall County Jail)
Published: Oct. 6, 2020 at 3:02 PM CDT
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - Prosecutors Tuesday filed new charges against a man suspected of fleeing the scene of a car crash that left a teenage girl paralyzed.

Luis Ruiz, 21, Grand Island, had been charged with felony Failure to Stop and Render Aid and with misdemeanor Reckless Driving. Ruiz' attorney filed a written not guilty plea to those charges on his client’s behalf.

On Tuesday the Hall County Attorney also charged Ruiz with two counts of felony Second Degree Assault and one court of Driving Under the Influence Causing Serious Bodily Injury. The combined max penalties for convictions on the new charges total 43 years in prison.

Police said the accident happened around 6:30 a.m. Sept 5 at the corner of Anderson Avenue and South Locust Street.

Samantha Atkinson, 13, Grand Island, was badly injured in the crash. She sustained a severed spine and internal injuries. She’s being treated at Nebraska Medicine in Omaha where at last check was listed in critical condition.

If convicted on the charge of failing to stop, Ruiz could get up to four years in prison.

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