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'Gives us a little bit of closure': Family of Edinburg woman killed in hit-and-run reacts to arrest of driver

1 month 2 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, August 04 2021 Aug 4, 2021 August 04, 2021 6:38 AM August 04, 2021 in News - Local

The family of an Edinburg woman killed in a hit-and-run crash on Sunday is reacting to the arrest of the driver.

Three charges are now being held against a man accused of killing Lorena Perez, her unborn son — and also injuring a minor.

"I want to thank the state troopers that were out there and were able to get this taken care of in a matter of — I want to say 24 hours, 24-36 hours if at all,” said Perez’s aunt, Letty Flores.

RELATED: DPS: Driver in deadly hit-and-run crash in Edinburg arrested, charged  

Perez's aunt thanking authorities, the community and now looking toward a funeral to say goodbye.

"It gives us a little bit of closure because at least we can put a face to who did this and I wanted him to see what he took from us," Flores said.

The suspect is 44 year-old Carlos Rodriguez Santiago. Hidalgo County jail records show Santiago has been jailed on driving while intoxicated charges six times from 2003 to 2015. In this instance, there is no mention of intoxication, but an arrest affidavit obtained by CHANNEL 5 NEWS states that Santiago “didn't think whatever he struck was significant enough for him to stop.” Santiago also tells troopers he could not recall how he arrived at his Edinburg home.

READ ALSO: DPS: Edinburg woman, unborn baby dead after hit-and-run, authorities looking for vehicle  

On top of two counts of failure to stop and render aid, Santiago is also charged with tampering with evidence. The charge comes after reports of him allegedly removing his license plates and hiding them under his mattress, as well as removing deployed airbags from his pickup truck. Investigators say Santiago refused to drive his car or go to work because his vehicle would be recognized.

"It's going to be hard and it's going to be difficult,” Flores said. “But we just — we're going to keep moving forward.”

According to that affidavit, another person injured in the crash is a minor. DPS has not provided an update on her condition.

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