A 12-year-old Leesburg boy waiting for a school bus was seriously injured Tuesday after he was struck by a car and dragged a short distance by a driver who then fled the scene, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
Preston Sandoval was airlifted for treatment to Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children in Orlando after he was hit about 7:45 a.m. while standing on the grass shoulder at Thomas Boat Landing Road at Em En El Grove Road, the report said.
Christian Messick, 19, the driver of the 2015 Chevrolet Malibu, was apprehended later in an abandoned motor home in woods near Fishermans Road in Paisley after being tracked by a Lake County sheriff’s K9 dog named Zeus, according to the report and a Sheriff’s Office Facebook post.
“Luckily the bus driver saw the vehicle and was able to provide a description,” wrote the Sheriff’s Office, which conducted a search by land and air and found the vehicle off County Road 42 in Paisley.
Two others were inside the motor home, one of whom, Mariano Keano Taclay, 24, of Eustis, was also arrested, according to the post, which added that a female was “being held against her will which is why she she was slow to respond to commands.”