Police: Hotel’s Desk Clerk Took Guest’s Car, Fatally Struck Pedestrian

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MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – A woman was left for dead in Miami Beach after a hotel employee drove off with a guest’s car and struck her, according to Miami Beach Police.

miami beach hit and run Police: Hotels Desk Clerk Took Guests Car, Fatally Struck Pedestrian

Miami Beach Police investigate a deadly hit and run accident on July 16, 2017. (Source: CBS4)

The hit and run happened around 3:30 a.m. near 38th Street and Collins Avenue.

The victim was crossing the street. Her tennis shoe laid in the middle of the street.

“She was pretty bad, non-coherent,” said Alredo Cano, a restaurant employee who was the first person on the scene. Other witnesses tried to stop the driver, including a cab driver who chased after him.

“I saw the lady laying on the ground. I saw the car make a left and I followed the guy,” said cabbie Joseph Deceus. “The guy slow down, he looked like he’s going to stop, but he’s not. I was attempting to get into my car. I’m shaking my hand, ‘You’re going to stop.’ I’m screaming, screaming. He slows down, tries to make U-turn, then he go down south on Indian Creek. He didn’t turn.”

Deceus called the police. Other good Samaritans in a nearby restaurant also called 911.

“We have a couple of guys who come here to have drinks late at night. They were the first ones to call the ambulance,” said Cano.

Within a few hours, officers found the car involved at a garage at the Merl Manor condominium, at the 3500 block of Indian Creek. The silver 2017 Chevrolet Cruze had heavy front-end damage.

Police said Angel Cuesta, 31, was behind the wheel and admitted to striking the woman and trying to hide the car after the fact.

Cuesta works at the front desk of the Red Hotel, located eight blocks south of the accident, according to an arrest report. He had access to the hotel’s valet keys cabinet and took the car because he wanted to buy a Red Bull drink from a nearby Walgreens, just before the accident. He said he tried to avoid hitting the woman but couldn’t evade in time.

The victim was rushed to the hospital but later died of her injuries.

“I feel bad. I didn’t think any human being could do something like that,” said Deceus. “To not even stop to help, to help yourself and help the people you hurt.”

Cuesta was charged with leaving the scene of a deadly crash.

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