What really happened the night a hit-and-run collision killed Ruby Martinez?
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
Reporter: Marcelino Benito
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - A Tucson teen hit by a car. The impact so great it shattered her pelvis. The driver just kept going, and drove home, when she was convinced to go back to the scene. The teen was dead. The driver arrested for felony hit and run.
The only thing that lights the road where Ruby Martinez was killed is a candle, a tiny flame lit in her memory. In a heart-wrenching interview last night, her father told me, he keeps waiting for her to walk through the door. Her mom keeps waiting to hear her music blasting from her room. But the silence is deafening and the woman responsible is out without bond.
"We need help, we need to know what really happened," says her father Arturo Martinez. "How can someone just drive off and leave my daughter for dead on the side of the road."
9OYS reporter Marcelino Benito took the family's concerns to the Pima County Sheriff's Department. They say their investigation is ongoing.
"Once we have all the evidence, we will have a better idea," said Deputy Tom Peine.
What detectives do know is Ruby was walking with traffic. Where she was walking is still unclear. The extent of her injuries is horrifying. Her pelvis shattered into 27 pieces. Detectives will use autopsy results, damage from the vehicle, skid marks and belongings scattered across the roadway to recreate the scene on a GPS system.
But regardless of what that investigation yields, Peine tells 9OYS a serious crime was still committed.
"The most important thing was the driver left from the scene," Peine said. "The victim was in the roadway for several minutes without anyone attending to her."
"How different of a situation would it be if she would have stopped?" asked Benito. "Now she's facing felony charges. In the other case, it's hard to say what if, but potentially he would have dealt with a civil citation."
Torres now faces a felony 3 hit and run charge. If convicted, she could face prison time.
"She had to have seen her," says her father. "But she chose to keep going."
"I don't want to hear her, I don't want no words from her," says Arturo, Ruby's brother. "I don't want to see her."
The one thing the family does want, they can never get back.
The Sheriff's Department also tells 9OYS, Torres was given a breathalyzer test when she returned to the scene. That test came back negative, so deputies do not believe alcohol played a factor in this accident. We also reached out to the County Attorney's office for more information, but they were not available for comment Tuesday afternoon.
The family is still working to raise funds for Ruby's funeral. They raised about $800 at a car wash Tuesday afternoon. The family says funeral costs will be about $4,000. If you'd like to help the family, they've opened a donation fund at Wells Fargo. You can donate at any location.