A city man admitted this week to intentionally running down another man with his car in June, an assault captured on a city street surveillance camera, a prosecutor said.
The victim, who was thrown into the air by the impact, miraculously did not break any bones and survived, said prosecutor William Sanderson of the Schenectady County District Attorney’s office. Now the driver is facing as many as six years in prison at his February sentencing.
Luis Rodriguez, 24, of Wendell Street, appeared Thursday in Schenectady County Court and pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree assault. He had been indicted on that count and a more-serious count of attempted murder, accused of trying to kill the man, Sanderson said.
The plea was taken by acting Schenectady County Court Judge Richard Giardino.
The incident happened June 1 on Eastern Avenue, near Walnut Street, and stemmed in part from a dispute between Rodriguez and the victim, Sanderson said. Rodriguez, while driving down Eastern Avenue, suddenly turned his vehicle toward the victim, near the sidewalk, striking him head-on, Sanderson said. The victim was there by chance, Sanderson said.
“The car’s coming down the street here and turns right at the person at a pretty high rate of speed,” Sanderson said, describing the surveillance video. “You see the guy go up in the air, and the car keeps going.”
Rodriguez’ car then glances off a small tree as it returns to the road, turning onto Wendell Avenue and right past the camera.
A witness is also seen running after the driver. That witness saw Rodriguez go into a house, hailed a police officer and pointed out the house.
The victim was taken to Albany Medical Center, where he was held overnight, police said.
The dispute between the two men related to Rodriguez’ wife and the victim’s girlfriend. Rodriguez’ wife is the daughter of the victim’s girlfriend, Sanderson said. The victim had stepped between Rodriguez and the two women when Rodriguez became abusive.
“He happens to see him on the street and goes right after him,” Sanderson said.
Rodriguez is represented by attorney Brian Mercy. Mercy could not be reached Friday.
Rodriguez is in custody pending his sentencing.