A 17-year-old high school student is facing amputation after a motorcycle hit and run crash a year ago, and the driver charged with hitting the teen and then leaving him in the road appeared before a Hamilton County judge Wednesday.
Randy and Evan Bidwell sat intently in Sessions Court, just a few feet away from the accused driver, Welner Martinez Castillo, 27. Judge Gary Starnes said Castillo waived his preliminary hearing, and the case is now heading to the grand jury.
Evan's arm is in a sling, paralyzed, and may need to have it amputated toward the end of the year, Bidwell said.
"It's a little challenging. Some things I can't do as well as I used to. More of an annoyance than anything," said Evan Bidwell, the victim.
The case is headed to a grand jury, and family said all they want is justice for how they're lives have changed.
The Ooltewah High School student left home on a green motorcycle about 8:30 p.m. on August 13, 2013. He was riding up South Moore Road in Chattanooga, when a car came out and hit him.
"The gentleman in question came out from a side street or driveway, hit my son. My son was left for dead on the side of the road and he ran," said Randy Bidwell.
Castillo abandoned his car a few blocks away at a home on Mayfair Avenue, and then he asked a person who lived there to take him to the hospital, according to the police report. He later disappeared from the hospital, and officers couldn't find him until he was arrested last week on an outstanding warrant.
While the Bidwell family waits, they said they want Castillo to get jail time or provide compensation for Evan's extensive injuries.
"My son has now gone through three nights of trauma unit, two weeks of intensive care, two week of regular hospital care and rehab care at another hospital, up to the total of over half a million dollars in medical bills," said Randy Bidwell.
Castillo is charged with leaving the accident scene, but the district attorney's office said that charge could be more severe if the grand jury indicts Castillo.
"If I was in his position, I definitely wouldn't have kept going," said Evan Bidwell. "I would have stopped and helped. It's what you do as a human."
Evan's father said he hopes his son can still follow his original plan to join the Army after graduation.
The court said the Hamilton County grand jury should return an indictment in about a month.By Briona Arradondo