A driver who plowed into a crowd on a Southern California sidewalk in 2019, injuring nine people, has been found guilty of hit-and-run charges.

FULLERTON, California.- A driver who plowed into a crowd on a Southern California sidewalk in 2019, injuring nine people, was found guilty Thursday of hit-and-run charges, but jurors deadlocked on a charge of driving under the influence. of drugs.

A mistrial was declared on a DUI charge in the trial of Christopher Solis, 27, the Orange County Register reported. Solis said he was relieved by the decision to mistrial, the newspaper reported.

“I have a wife. I have a son. I was scared,” he said, adding: “This whole thing has been emotional. I think about the victims every day.”

The Anaheim man was behind the wheel of a Toyota Tacoma in February 2019 when the truck jumped a curb in Fullerton, struck people and then crashed into a palm tree. Bars had just closed and there were hundreds of people on the sidewalks, the Register said.

Several victims were trapped under the truck until bystanders lifted the truck and freed them. Some were hospitalized with critical injuries.

Solis was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Authorities said he had marijuana and another drug in his system. But the defense argued that the accident was an accident.

Defense attorney Alan Spears said Solis was trying to escape from some people who were chasing him and tried to go around some illegally parked vehicles when one hit his truck, causing Solis to lose control and veer onto the sidewalk, the Register reported.

Jurors found him guilty of hit and run causing injury, hit and run causing property damage and being in possession of a drug.

The Orange County District Attorney’s Office did not immediately indicate whether it would retry Solis on the DUI charge.

By Sam