CASTRO VALLEY (CBS SF) – An alleged car thief who struck and injured two young boys and then fled the scene of the accident has been arrested, authorities said Wednesday.
Authorities said 29-year-old Castro Valley resident Daniel Morris was being held at the Santa Rita Jail in Dublin on $70,000 bail on charges related to the hit-and-run and vehicle theft.
A joint law enforcement effort including the sheriff’s office, the California Highway Patrol and the U.S. Marshals Service tracked Morris to a hotel in the 21800 block of Foothill Boulevard near the Hayward-Castro Valley border, sheriff’s Sgt. Ray Kelly said.
He was taken into custody without incident at 1:15 a.m., Kelly said.
Morris was allegedly the driver of the black Ford Fusion that struck the boy while he was walking with his grandmother and brother around 8 a.m. on March 7th.
The 6-year-old boy was walking to school on Meadowview Drive toward Marshall Street in Castro Valley and had stopped on the sidewalk. While he was stopped, a black Ford Fusion sedan coming up behind him veered onto the sidewalk and hit the child, CHP Officer Dan Jacowitz said.
The Ford Fusion also struck the boy’s 8-year-old brother, who sustained minor injuries.
Morris kept going on the sidewalk after hitting the boy, eventually crashing into a pole nearby. He got out of the car and ran into the neighborhood, Jacowitz said.
The 6-year-old boy was taken to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in Oakland with severe injuries to his leg.
The car that struck the boy was stolen from a Livermore auto dealership, according to police.
Investigators were looking into whether Morris was involved in the “slightly sophisticated” burglary at Livermore Ford Lincoln, where five cars were stolen, according to Livermore police Sgt. Steve Goard.
The Ford Fusion was one of five cars that were dropped off for service at the Ford dealership, according to Goard. Surveillance video shows the suspects wearing dark hooded sweatshirts as they pried open a key drop-off box and stole the cars between 12:39 a.m. and 1:57 a.m.
Another of the cars was found near the canal in Livermore and appears to have broken down, Goard said. Three of the vehicles are still missing.
Authorities said they have located evidence and secured witness statements that establish that Morris was the primary suspect in this case.
CHP officials are conducting a separate investigation into Morris’ associates who may have assisted him.
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