Jaron Blake Hillyer, 27, was allowed to remain free on $50,000 bond he posted after he was arrested May 7 by San Diego Police in the April 9 incident.
Julio Vasquez was driving in the 2900 block of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard with his wife and children around midnight when he saw a couple whose vehicle broke down.
He was standing near the disabled car when he was struck allegedly by Hillyer at 12:06 a.m. near Nimitz Boulevard. The driver kept going.
San Diego Superior Court Judge Joseph Brannigan set a preliminary hearing for July 17.
Hillyer is charged with a single count of hit and run causing injury. Deputy District Attorney Kristie Nikoletich said the maximum sentence is three years in prison, but he could also be placed on probation if he is convicted.
“His thoughts are with the other person and his family,” said his attorney, Greg Turner. “Mr. Hillyer asked me to make that statement.”
Turner said it was possible Hillyer panicked at the time. There are no charges that allege he was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Hillyer’s Subaru had a smashed windshield and was found in front of a house on Orchard Avenue in Ocean Beach where he was living at the time.
The prosecutor said the victim would be testifying at the preliminary hearing. Vasquez gave several television news interviews in which he said he lost his job as he was too injured to go to work.
Vasquez’s lung was punctured and was hospitalized for awhile. He said he has pain every day.
A reward was offered to find the hit and run driver in late April, but authorities have not disclosed whether that had anything to do with Hillyer’s arrest.