Driver arrested after man in wheelchair killed in hit-and-run, Austin police say


A driver was arrested after a man in a wheelchair was killed in a hit-and-run, Austin police said Tuesday.

Police said 28-year-old Rafael Padilla drove away in his Jeep Grand Cherokee after hitting Robert Copeland, 60, who died May 7 at the scene on the Interstate 35 service road, near the intersection with Anderson Lane (U.S. 183).

Padilla was arrested based on a Crime Stoppers tip, Austin police said.

He was charged with failure to render aid, a second-degree felony, according to an arrest affidavit. Padilla told police he fled the scene because he thought someone had placed an object in the road with the intent of robbing him when he stopped, the affidavit said.

Anyone with additional information about this incident should call the Austin police’s vehicular homicide detectives at 512-974-3761.


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