It has been announced by the Florida Highway Patrol that earlier Thursday afternoon, the man sought by the authorities for being the prime suspect in a fatal hit-and-run case that crashed into a daycare in the Orlando area, has actually surrendered and turned himself in. The man is 28-year-old Robert Alex Corchado from Winter Park, Florida.
Corchado, described as an ex-convict with ties to the Latin Kings gang, had been driving a Dodge Durango Wednesday when he hit a Toyota Solara. The convertible then jumped a curb and crashed into the KinderCare Learning Center building. At the time of the incident, more than 50 adults and children were inside. John Mulhall, who is a spokesman for the Orange County Fire Department, confirmed that of the 14 people that were injured, three of them adults and the other 11 were children.
One four-year old girl, Lily Quintus, who was later identified as the daughter of Groveland Fire Department paramedic Brian Quintus, ended up dying from her injuries later in the evening on Wednesday, the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children confirmed. Lily’s mother, Nicole, said that three surgeons had worked to try and save her daughter. A fellow firefighter from the Groveland Fire Department set up a donation page for the family earlier today to help raise funeral expenses and it has already succeeded in its goal of $10,000, having hit $22,690.
The other children hurt in the Orlando crash, all different ages, had injuries ranging from minor to critical. Two have already been discharged, while others are still in various stages of care. People throughout the community went to the daycare Thursday to console each other. A makeshift memorial was made and people brought flowers, candles and teddy bears.
Officials from law enforcement located the Dodge Durango belonging to Corchado abandoned two hours after the incident in Winter Park after following a tip from a neighbor. The Orlando daycare crash suspect eventually surrendered and turned himself in at the County Jail 24 hours after a search for him began.
It has been said by law enforcement officials that Corchado had been arrested eight times since the year 2000. At the time of the crash, Corchado had been out on bail for his most recent arrest, which involved a charge for leaving the scene of a crash where damage was involved, a felony charge for selling narcotics, and a felony possession for marijuana. Records from the Department of Corrections showed that Corchado has also served prison time in the past for extortion and trafficking cocaine.
Mayor of Orange County, Teresa Jacobs, also commented on the case, calling the incident a complete tragedy and terrible disaster.
“I myself, am the grandfather of three young children. What has happened here was an act of cowardice,” Governor of Florida, Rick Scott, said in a statement. “Members of the Florida Highway Patrol are working, along with local law enforcement, to make sure the suspect who caused the Orlando daycare crash either surrenders, or is made to face the consequences of their action and face justice.”
By Jessica Cooley