Driver Suffers 'Serious Injuries' After Man Throws 40-Pound Sandbag from Michigan Overpass
A driver is lucky to be alive after a man threw a 40-pound sandbag from a Michigan overpass that smashed through her windshield as she was behind the wheel, according to authorities.
The Michigan State Police confirmed in a series of tweets that the dangerous incident occurred on Sunday night around 11 p.m. on the I-96 near Old Plank Road in Lyon Township.
MSP officers said they were first called to the scene to help the Oakland County Sheriff's Department with a traffic crash investigation. However, when they arrived, they discovered that the incident was far more severe than what was initially presented.
According to their tweets, a preliminary investigation determined that a male suspect — whom police have since identified as 41-year-old David Garcia — was involved in a single-vehicle crash with his truck on I-96.
After the crash, authorities said the man abandoned his truck and walked up onto the Old Plank Road overpass, which is currently under construction.
There, he spotted multiple 40-pound sandbags and "began throwing them from the overpass in an attempt to strike passing vehicles on the freeway," according to MSP.
Construction workers told NBC affiliate WDIV-TV that they believe the sandbags were holding down caution signs at the overpass site.
Eventually, one of those bags smashed through the windshield of the unidentified female driver, causing "serious injuries" that required her to be transported to a local hospital, according to the MSP.
In the meantime, authorities said Garcia left the scene and headed home to Brighton with a passerby that picked him up. While in the vehicle, Garcia allegedly disclosed how he threw the sandbags from the overpass, which prompted the driver to call MSP.
Through that phone call, officials were able to determine Garcia's location and went on to search the overpass area, where they found "several footprints from the same pair of shoes in the sand around the area from which the sandbags were thrown," according to the tweets.
Those footprints were later matched with Garcia's after MSP said they contacted him and seized his shoes for evidence.
Following an interview with police, Garcia was booked in Oakland County Jail and charged with Felonious Assault Causing Great Bodily Harm and/or Impairment, Damage to Private Property and Throwing Objects at Motor Vehicle Causing Injury, according to officials.
He was later arraigned on one count of throwing objects at trains/cars causing serious impairment, which MSP said is a 10-year felony, and given a $50,000 cash bond pending further court proceedings.
An attorney for Garcia could not immediately be identified by PEOPLE. It is unclear whether he has entered a plea.
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In the wake of the incident, MSP officers are reminding people about the dangers of throwing anything from an overpass.
"The victim was very lucky she wasn’t more seriously hurt or killed," they tweeted alongside two photos of the woman's damaged vehicle. "Throwing anything on to the freeway from an overpass or the embankment can cause serious damage, injuries or death. Don’t do it!"