Police: suspect in deadly Broadway hit-and-run confesses

Dennis Esquibel suspected of driving car in deadly hit-and-run on S. Broadway. Sept. 27, 2012

Dennis Esquibel suspected of driving car in deadly hit-and-run on S. Broadway. Sept. 27, 2012

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DENVER -- A police affidavit says the suspect in the hit-and-run on S. Boradway that killed Laura McDermott admitted to being the driver of the car that hit her.

FOX31 Denver's Julie Hayden also reports the probable cause affidavit shows that Dennis Esquibel admitted to concealing the car after the collision.

McDermott, 32, died after a car traveling at a high rate of speed hit her in the crosswalk at Cedar Ave. early Sunday morning.

The suspect vehicle was found behind a business next to railroad tracks in Denver Wednesday, and police arrested Dennis Esquibel Thursday. He now faces charges of felony hit-and-run and vehicular homicide.

He made his first court appearance Friday. The judge set bond at $100,000.

For four days, the family of Laura McDermott waited for the driver to turn himself in, or for police to catch him.

Finally, that wait is over, but not their grief.

Laura McDermott
Laura McDermott

"Laura had a whole life in front of her. She was about to get engaged. And he's ruined all that," says an emotional Gerry McDermott, Laura’s father.

He was excited to celebrate his 32-year-old daughter’s engagement next weekend. But instead, he and his family will mourn her death.

"We've done all the planning for Laura's funeral. So I have time to be angry and I'm angry," he says.

Angry about this Toyota Corolla, speeding down Broadway moments before killing his youngest.

"The things you have to go through to say goodbye to your daughter,” Gerry pauses through tears. “It's so tough. I don't wish that on anybody.”

For days, police didn’t know who was driving the killing machine.

It wasn’t until Wednesday when they found the car--with a huge hole in the windshield--that the puzzle pieces started falling into place.

"The relationship between the owner of the vehicle, and the suspect in custody, he is her son," says Denver Police Lt. Rob Rock, who spoke at a press conference with Chief Robert White and Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey.

The suspect is 25-year-old Dennis Esquibel.

His mother, Margaret Esquibel, telling police her son was driving the car.

They arrested him at his Denver home in the 4100 block of N. St. Paul St. about 3:30 a.m.

“Sorry for what happened. I feel real bad what happened to them. My cousin is not a bad person," says Esquibel’s cousin, Brooke Esquibel.

"We’ve had far too many hit-and-runs, with someone injured or killed this year. This one, hopefully results in the kind of justice we all seek in these kinds of cases," says Morrissey.

It's what Laura’s family hopes for too.

Because they say nothing can ever replace a special daughter they nicknamed “Joy Bringer.”

"I hope he goes away for a very, very, long time and he thinks about the pain he caused his family, our family, and Laura's fiance, Nate."

Police say two women were with Esquibel at the time.

But no charges are pending against Irene Warren-Baca and Vanessa Saleh, both of Denver.

Esquibel served time in prison for car theft in 2007.

He now faces charges of felony hit-and-run and vehicular homicide.

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