Man arrested in Deltona hit-and-run that injured child at bus stop



VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. - A man was arrested in a road-rage hit-and-run case that injured a 4-year-old boy in Deltona last week, according to the Volusia County Sheriff's Department.

Deputies said they arrested Jeremy Vega, 19, of DeLand late Monday night.

"Everybody's been waiting for this for the last couple days," said Abraham Ortiz, Jr., whose brother Luis was hit by the car.

Investigators said the drivers of two vehicles were engaged in a road-rage confrontation while driving on East Normandy Boulevard.

Witnesses said the driver of one vehicle threw something at another vehicle and then suddenly lost control. The car struck a bench near the intersection of East Normandy and East Hancock Drive, where 4-year-old Luis Ortiz, his father, his sister and another man were waiting for a bus.

Ortiz was airlifted to a local hospital after the crash.

According to investigators, Ortiz suffered compound fractures on his legs.

According to investigators, a headlight assembly from the car that struck Ortiz was left behind at the scene of the hit-and-run. The assembly contained a part number that led investigators to a 1999 Chrysler 300M. That car was the same type of vehicle found burning Thursday in the parking lot of a Deltona church.

Investigators said the car was traced to Vega's mother, who told them her son had been driving it for several months.
According to investigators, the child's father and another witness picked Vega out of a police lineup.

Florida Department of Corrections records show that Vega was released from prison in 2012 after serving a two-year prison sentence on a burglary conviction. He was serving five years of felon probation.

Vega also has a suspended driver's license for failure to pay traffic fines, according to the sheriff's office.

Vega is charged with failure to stop at a crash resulting in injury, driving with a suspended license and violation of probation, according to investigators.

He remains in the Volusia County Jail without bail, investigators said.

In a profanity-laced tirade, Vega denied responsibility for the incident when questioned by WFTV's Renee Stoll as he was led to a patrol car.

"I'm not worried about him caring. I already know he doesn't care because he didn't turn around, he didn't stop or nothing," said Abraham Ortiz.

Luis Ortiz has been released from the hospital and is back home recuperating.

"He's alive still and that's what we're all happy about," said Abraham Ortiz.

Investigators said they have not yet identified the driver of a pickup truck that was involved in the road-rage incident, but they don't believe that driver was involved in the crash.