Police: 19-year-old arrested in Garden City hit and run case

Police: 19-year-old arrested in Garden City hit and run case

GARDEN CITY , Idaho (KBOI) - Garden City Police say they have arrested a person of interest in a hit and run crash that sent a man to the hospital over the weekend.

Police say they found 19-year-old John French at his west Meridian home and are interviewing him.

Officers say they have seized his 1995 Toyota 4 Runner that they believe is tied to the crash.

According to witnesses, Alan Beavers, 24, of Garden City, was crossing Chinden Avenue when he was hit by the speeding SUV Saturday night just after 10 p.m. 

“We just heard a smack.  We thought that a car hit a pole.  But then all of a sudden we looked out our window and there’s a guy on the ground and people are screaming that he got hit by a car,” says Panda Schaeffer. 

Employees at a nearby gas station say that the truck pulled into the parking lot and backed around to scope out the area.  The truck than took off out of one of the side entrances without helping the victim that was left in the middle of the road.

Using records through the Idaho Department of Motor Vehicles, Garden City Police said 230 vehicles were idetified as possible leads, which ultimately led detectives to French's vehicle in Meridian.

Now French is facing charges for two felonies -- leaving the scene of an injury accident and destruction of evidence. He's also facing misdemeanor wreckless driving.

Police said only French knows why he decided to take off. 

Sergeant Comptom says, “There could be a number of reasons, there could be alcohol involved, there could be a suspended drivers license it could be fear, could be scared there is a number of reasons why people may do this.”

In court on Wednesday, prosecutors say French admitted to hitting Beavers and then taking off. They also say he purchased a hood and taillight at a local scrap yard.

A judge issued a $50,000 bond.