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One child dead, 14 injured in Florida day care crash

WINTER PARK, Fla. (AP) - A car smashed into an Orlando-area day care Wednesday, killing a girl and injuring 14 others, at least a dozen of them children, and authorities were searching for the driver of an SUV who they say started the crash, officials said.

A Toyota Solara convertible went out of control after it was struck by a Dodge Durango, jumped a curb and smashed into the day care, breaking through the wall and into the building, said Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Wanda Diaz. The convertible driver was not hurt.

The Durango left the scene but was located almost two hours later after it had been abandoned at a home. The highway patrol said it is looking for 26-year-old Robert Corchado, who has been arrested eight times since 2000, according to Florida Department of Law Enforcement records. Troopers said he was the driver of the Durango, but wouldn't say how they established that. Troopers said Corchado may be trying to leave the area, and troopers and deputies headed to Orlando International Airport to look for him.

Diaz said a girl died at Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, but she didn't have any more information on her. One person at the hospital was in critical condition and five others were in serious condition, said spokeswoman Katie Dagenais.

In all, 13 people were hospitalized and two others were treated at the scene, said John Mulhall, a spokesman for the Orange County Fire Rescue.

Several of the injured at the KinderCare building in Winter Park were reported to be in "very, very serious condition," Diaz said.

A man answered the phone for a number listed to Corchado and hung up when he was asked, "May I speak to Robert Corchado."

"Please keep a lookout and let us know if you see anything," said Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs said.

Corchado's most recent arrest was on a misdemeanor charge of leaving the scene of a crash involving damage, a felony charge of selling narcotics and felony marijuana possession last December. He was out on more than $10,000 bond and had pleaded not guilty to the charges. His defense attorney in that case, Jack Kaleita, didn't return a phone call or email after business hours.

Department of Corrections records show he has served prison time for trafficking cocaine and extortion.

Jacobs called the crash an "absolute tragedy and disaster."

Local television footage showed small children and infants in cribs taken outside on the day care's playground and several of the injured were carried out on stretchers.

The highway patrol reported that the injured were taken to five different hospitals.

Late Wednesday afternoon parents could be seen waiting to pick up their children, and then clutching them in their arms as they were escorted to their vehicles by authorities.

The day care's website says the center provides childcare and learning opportunities for children ages 6 weeks to 12 years old and has been in the community for over 25 years.

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Hey, Dude April 10 2014 at 1:20 PM

How heartbreaking...God help those poor people. And may He also damn the worthless, inbred piece of garbage who caused the accident. That thing needs to be given the death sentence when they catch it. Oh, and while He's at the business of punishing worthless human scum, I hope there's a special place in hell for garbage like jewelkkk for that idiot's disgusting remarks. Everyone who reads the replies to this article needs to report jewelkkk's remark as abusive, because that thing needs to be banned from making comments.

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1 reply
crotalus Hey, Dude April 10 2014 at 1:54 PM

I scrolled through about 50 or 60 comments and couldn't find any comment by jewelkkk, so maybe your plea worked or folks already flagged him.

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RonRuthNik April 10 2014 at 10:59 AM

They're gonna nail his ass to the wall when they find him...........

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1 reply
rodshiley71 RonRuthNik April 10 2014 at 12:49 PM

They should nail the judge's ass to the wall for allowing this POS to be on the streets in the first place.

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tazridesaharley April 09 2014 at 11:44 PM

When the driver of the SUV is found he should face murder charges.It should be no different if you use a gun or knife to kill or you do it with a car.And for every child hurt should be a seperate asault charge.Leaving the scene of a accident would be the least of his worries.

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cheynaz April 10 2014 at 10:53 AM

INTO A DAYCARE!? WHAT THE FREAK!

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cptfritz April 10 2014 at 10:52 AM

Arrested EIGHT times since 2000. PERSISTENT FELON. Leave his ass in jail

Flag Reply +17 rate up
Hi, Patti April 10 2014 at 12:04 AM

Why is this guy still driving?!

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1 reply
Hello beautiful Hi, Patti April 10 2014 at 1:33 AM

and why is he still breathing?

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1 reply
Hello Butch Hello beautiful April 10 2014 at 3:09 AM

land of the free sad it be

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Tom April 10 2014 at 12:06 AM

I hope they have the death penalty

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vrf19977 April 10 2014 at 10:50 AM

Please be praying for the driver of the convertible, who is undoubtedly wracked with guilt even though he was not to blame for the death of the little girl. I hope they find this monster and I sincerely wish the U.S. would bring back firing squads; this piece of filth does not deserve a trial or a comfortable jail cell.

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eaglemore46 April 10 2014 at 10:49 AM

the judge who let him out must be so proud of himself ! ,, what the hell were you thinking ,, he was going to behave ?? ,, be a good role model ? ,, come back to court and be handed a free pass when his court date came around ? ,, this guy has no moral compass and you knew it ,, find him lock him up and throw away the dam key !

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njkelley105 April 10 2014 at 10:46 AM

since I am a retired teacher, I really hurt for all these teachers, children , and parents. this man should go to prison for a long, long time for everyone he has hurt and especially for the angel he killed.

Flag Reply +7 rate up
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