Hutchinson man in critical condition after attack, two accidents

An 18-year-old Hutchinson man was in critical condition Saturday at Wesley Medical Center in Wichita after he said he was attacked at a party and then involved in two accidents while being taken to the hospital, the Reno County sheriff said on his department’s Facebook page.

Reno County Sheriff Randy Henderson reported that the teen, 18-year-old Jesus Valtierra, said he had been at a party in Hutchinson when he became the victim of an aggravated battery. He said he was placed in the back of a pickup truck and was being driven to the hospital when the truck had an accident at 30th and Buhler Road in northeast Reno County, the sheriff said. Sheriff’s officers were called to the scene but did not see an accident when they got there.

A few minutes later, Henderson reported, the Hutchinson Fire Department was called to a car fire at the dead-end of Old K-61 Highway and 43rd Street. Firefighters found that a truck had run into a tree there, and the tree and truck were on fire. The driver had fled, Henderson said, and Valtierra and a 14-year-old girl from Hutchinson were found injured. Valtierra was lying in the grass with his clothes partially burned off, and he had a broken ankle, cuts on his face and possible internal injuries, Henderson said on Facebook. He was flown by helicopter to Wesley.

The 14-year-old girl’s legs were injured, and her forehead was cut, Henderson said. She and Valtierra gave the account of the party and the two accidents, Henderson said. A person located later at Hutchinson Hospital was being investigated as the driver, Henderson said.