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Worker who narrowly survived crash caused by overdosing driver has long road to recovery

1 year 4 months 2 days ago Wednesday, March 22 2023 Mar 22, 2023 March 22, 2023 7:48 PM March 22, 2023 in News
Source: WKRN

BATON ROUGE - A man who was working his last delivery of the day before being hit by a driver allegedly high on opiates has a long way to go in his recovery. His wife spoke with 2 On Your Side's Brittany Weiss Wednesday.

Watch the interview at 6:00 on WBRZ

Kevin Smith, a car hauler from Tennessee, was working his last delivery when he was struck by Richard Scholtens Mar. 10. The Baton Rouge Police Department said Scholtens had overdosed on opiates, and he was found unresponsive inside his vehicle less than a mile from the crash site.

First responders had to revive him using Narcan before bringing him to a hospital and arresting him. He has since bonded out of jail. District Attorney Hillar Moore says that he's pursuing the maximum sentence for Scholtens, but even that is only five years.

Smith was severely injured in the crash, but his doctors say it could have been a lot worse.

"It's a complete miracle because nothing happened to his head and nothing happened to his stomach," said his wife, Tuesday Smith.

Tuesday says that a witness told police that her husband had been tossed about 10 feet and flipped a couple of times before the driver left the scene.

Smith had a long list of injuries, including lost teeth, several broken bones, and punctured lungs. He has several cracked ribs and his feet are broken in three places. He nearly lost both of his legs. 

"He can't even move, my husband cannot even move," said Tuesday.

While he no longer has a breathing tube, Tuesday said her husband had to relearn to breathe. She says their whole lives have changed and she hopes the person who put her husband in the hospital turns his life around.

"To repent and to change his life and to go in the right direction and to get off drugs, that's really what I would want," she said.

Kevin has had 11 surgeries while being cared for at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital. He'll stay in Baton Rouge until he heads to Houston for two months of rehab. There's a fundraiser for him next month in Tennessee. Donations are being accepted here.

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