A Springfield man pleaded not guilty in the hit and run crash Tuesday night that left a toddler with a broken leg.
He’s currently held on $7,500 bail.
The mother of the toddler injured gives us an update on her daughter's condition.
Police said the driver, who was identified as 32-year-old Edgar Diaz drove through a stop sign at the corner of Massasoit Street, struck the toddler with his pickup truck, and then tried to leave the scene on foot.
According to police, Diaz has no known criminal record, does not have a Massachusetts driver’s license, and his vehicle is registered in Tennessee.
“It appears the defendant has strong ties in Arizona and Guatemala, as well,"said the Judge.
Police said when Diaz fled his vehicle on foot after hitting the little girl, a group of women physically restrained him and police found him with injuries to his face.
“I’m holding her hand and she lets go. So the car’s going really fast and the bumper of his car hits her head and she falls, and then he keeps going. He ran over her leg and I see her little body twirling. After that I went crazy. I jumped on his car and started beating his car. I was really upset, crying. I put her in the car and we drove to the hospital," said Natalia's mother, Caren Ventura.
Caren Ventura told Western Mass News in an exclusive interview that her daughter has a broken femur, now wearing a cast from the top of her thigh to her foot.
People who live on Massasoit Street say speeding is an issue.
“We’ve been here 11 years and it’s always like this. As soon as the weather warms up, it becomes a raceway," said Springfield resident Felix Rosario.
Natalia’s grandmother, Ivanska Almodovar, said the same.
According to a spokesperson for the Springfield Police Department, there have been four accidents on Massasoit Street since January 2017 and three of those resulted in injuries, this includes Tuesday's hit and run.
“I thank god that I didn’t lose her. I don’t know what I would do,” said Ventura.
It’s been a difficult year for Natalia’s family as her father was killed in a car accident in September.