Hit-and-run Samaritans recovering

One good Samaritan who was run over by a truck after attempting to help a woman who was getting punched in the face has been released from St. Mary’s Hospital, but his friend is in far worse condition. He is said to be in a coma and was undergoing a fifth surgery Thursday for internal injuries.

Ruben, whose last name isn’t being used because his alleged attackers are on the run, was recovering Thursday with a broken arm, a head laceration and a reconstructed bottom lip.

“I don’t regret what I did even though I’m paying for the consequences of it now,” Ruben said.

At about 1 a.m. Sunday, the 39-year-old was at Tequila’s Mexican Restaurant, 2454 U.S. Highway 6&50, when he and a friend saw a man holding a woman by her hair and another man punching her in the face in the restaurant.

Ruben said he and his friend decided to help and followed the attackers outside.

Ruben’s friend is not being identified because he couldn’t be contacted for this story.

Ruben said he and his friend were on foot following the woman’s two attackers who were in a truck when he was hit by the vehicle in the nearby Carl’s Jr. parking lot. The two men, whom police identify as Juan Martinez, 29, and his brother, Miguel Martinez, 23, are wanted on an arrest warrant in connection with the attack.

Ruben said neither he nor his friend knew the men.

After being struck by the vehicle, Ruben was thrown to the ground, striking the back of his head. One of the men then stole his cell phone and wallet and kicked him in the face, he said.

Police said Miguel Martinez is wanted on charges of beating up Ruben.

Ruben said he didn’t know at the time where his friend was, but he later learned that a tire of the truck had run him over. Both men were found in a pool of blood in separate parts of the parking lot, according to the police report.

A woman who called The Daily Sentinel and identified herself as Jessica Strohm, Juan Martinez’s wife, said Juan and Miguel also were injured in the confrontation. She said Juan and Miguel stopped by her home saying they had been cut with a beer bottle and had broken bones.

Strohm said she was told the two men were hanging onto the truck’s doors and were hit when they fell off. Her husband and his brother fled because “they were scared.” Strohm said she does not know where the men are now.

Ruben said he did not fight with the attackers and did not see them get injured.

Ruben said police recovered the pickup the men were driving, in Olathe.

For now, Ruben wonders when he can return to work doing finish concrete work. He was midway through a project in Parachute when he was injured. His right arm, secured in a cast, gives him obvious pain and he grimaces while lifting it above his head to stop the blood from pounding.

He was visited in the hospital by the woman who was hit in the face, her eye completely swollen. The impact from the punch caused her contact lens to mash into her eye and will affect her vision, Ruben said.

“I didn’t think about being a hero,” he said. “I have four sisters. I was always taught not to hit. It could have been my sister. That could have been my daughter, or even my mother.”


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