Cyclist left for dead speak out
WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miam Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco
POMPANO BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) -- A South Florida bicyclist who was left in critical condition after being dragged for miles by a hit-and-run driver and then abandoned in a dumpster back in December is making his first public appearance since the accident.
On Friday, the family members of 53-year-old Craig Camlin, who was struck and dragged by a hit-and-run driver, then dumped in a field and left for dead, spoke to the media at Broward Health North in Deerfield Beach about his road to recovery. He could only whisper the word "animal" to describe the man who put him in his hospital bed.
His sister, his pastor and members of his family gathered around his bed as he addressed the media for the first time since his accident, last year. "I'm angry about it," he admitted.
"For our family, it's devastating," said his sister, Jayne Camlin, who was at his bedside.
Camlin's life was forever changed Dec. 16, 2013, at around 6:30 a.m., during what he thought would be one of his routine bike rides to work. Camlin was traveling northbound on the 5200 block, of Northeast 18th Avenue, in Fort Lauderdale when, according to police, a 2003 black Ford Mustang, driven by 27-year-old Axel Inostroza, struck him. "I'm very mad," he said with the help of his sister.
According to investigators, Inostroza struck Camlin and kept driving for two miles with Camlin stuck in the car's smashed rear window. According to police investigators, once the driver arrived at his Pompano Beach townhouse, he removed Camlin from the car's roof and dumped him in a wooded area, behind a trash bin and bushes. His sister said, "The doctor said, when he arrived here at the hospital, he was D.O.A. They brought him back to life."
Inostroza then hid his damaged black 2003 Ford Mustang and went inside his home to sleep, according to the confession he later gave investigators. He also admitted to police that he had been drinking.
A landscaping crew found Camlin clinging to life at around 9 a.m., that same day, and called authorities. He was taken to North Broward Hospital in critical condition with spinal injuries, a deep gash on his head and a nearly severed ear.
The spinal injuries left Camlin paralyzed from the waist down with loss of memory, and he can barely speak. He could only whisper a message of warning to those who may be considering getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol: "Don't drink and drive."
Camlin was just removed from his ventilator Thursday and addressed the media for the first time Friday. His sister said, "We have nothing, his whole life has been impacted by this, totally changed. Nothing will be the same."
Camlin, who does not have insurance, has nearly a $1 million hospital bill and his family is reaching out to the public for help. "There's a wonderful organization, helphopelive.org , which is a non-profit organization that just helps patients and families," said his sister.
For those who want to help, they can visit the following website: www.helphopelive.org .