Arrest made in July 4 hit-and-run case

A two-car hit-and-run accident July 4 resulted in one person with serious injuries being sent to a hospital in Des Moines and two others having minor injuries. The accident occurred on the eastbound exit of Highway 30 at Duff Avenue. A black SUV struck a silver 2003 Ford Explorer, sending it into the ditch after flipping several times. The SUV left the accident but was found by Ames police a short while later.

Maddy Arnold

An arrest was made this morning in connection to a hit-and-run accident that occurred on the Fourth of July, according to a press release from the Ames Police Department.

Ames citizen Craig Troy Christman, 53, turned himself into Ames Police on the morning of Aug. 1. He was then taken to the Story County Jail for processing.

On July 4, Ames police officers were called to the eastbound side of Highway 30 on the Duff Avenue exit. There they found Manuel Rodriguez Rocha, 22, ejected from his vehicle, which was struck by another vehicle and then flipped.

Rocha sustained life-threatening injuries and was taken to a Des Moines hospital. 

Witnesses at the scene said a gray Nissan Pathfinder changed lanes into the victim’s car, which caused the accident, and continued down the exit ramp. Another witness was able to provide police with the license plate number.

Police were able to locate both the car, which had damage consistent with the hit-and-run accident, and Christman. He denied involvement in the collision but said he did drive where the collision occured.

On the day of the accident, Christman failed both field sobriety tests and an initial breath test. He also agreed to a chemical test which showed he had a blood alcohol content of .154 percent, which is above the legal limit of .08 percent. 

Arrest warrants for Christman were issued for leaving the scene of an accident resulting in a serious injury, serious injury by vehicle, operating while intoxicated and an unsafe lane change.