A teenager who suffered the most serious injuries when a transient drove his car onto a sidewalk in La Jolla injuring three teenagers took the stand on Monday.
Ronald Troyer, 66, was behind the wheel last August when his car jumped a curb in La Jolla, crashing through the window of the Cass Street Cafe and Bakery, according to prosecutors.
"I remember my arm, felt like it was inside the ground. I tried to get up. Someone told me not to,” testified 14-year-old Alani Aguerre.
Aguerre was one of the most severely injured. Her parents say she was thrown from the hood of the car through the window and into the bakery where the car then landed on top of her. She was in a coma for two weeks.
The prosecutor claims Troyer tried to shirk responsibility.
“He looked at me, right in my eyes and said, while he was holding the car keys, ‘somebody stole my car. I wasn’t driving. Oh my gosh!’ I just looked at him and thought, you’ve got to be kidding me,” witness Alisa Anne Widmier testified on Monday.
She said the crash sounded breaking glass.
“Things were breaking like a bomb had gone off and so that was the sound of the car hitting the children, the transformer, and then busting through the wall of the restaurant,” said Widmier.
Witnesses Brad Partington testified that he saw two of the teenage victims go up in the air.
“When I got out of my car and assessed everything there was a kid laying face up on the pavement. He was twitching, throwing up," Partington testified.
He says he walked over to the bakery and saw that the front window was broken and a gold car was lodged inside.
“A gentleman got out of the car. He kept going, ‘what happened? What happened?’ He looked as if he had no idea what was going on,” Partington testified.
Deputy District Attorney David Uyar said Troyer tried to" walk away in the middle of all that chaos" and witnesses had to keep him on the scene.
A 15-year-old testified on Monday that he had to undergo five surgeries after the crash that he says launched him 15 to 20 feet into a bush. He remembers waking up in extreme pain.
“After some of the surgeries were done to fix the bone, one of the surgeries I had two rods, then I developed excessive swelling and I had to have surgeries done to fix that,” said Myles Polger.
Myles said he is now in rehab for his legs, and cannot run yet.
Police at the scene of the August crash said Troyer did have marijuana in his system, but not alcohol.
During opening statements, defense attorney David Thompson said there is no dispute that Troyer had some marijuana in his system. He had smoked in the morning. But Thompson argued that it was not the marijuana that caused him to crash into cafe, but rather a "seizure or fainting spell."
Troyer is charged with DUI, felony reckless driving, hit-and-run, and driving on a suspended license.
He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.