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FOCUS: ORANGE COUNTY COMMUNITY NEWS | NORTH: FULLERTON

Toddler Dies After Being Run Over in Driveway

November 06, 1998|JASON KANDEL

A 1-year-old girl died Thursday morning after a neighbor accidentally drove over her in his truck, police said.

Tairi Lucatero died of head injuries shortly after arriving at UCI Medical Center in Orange, police said.

Manuel Olvera, a 33-year-old commercial painter, was pulling out of the driveway of his South Pritchard Avenue apartment building about 7:40 a.m. when the accident occurred. Olvera told police he felt the right rear tire roll over something and, after getting out of the truck to investigate, found the girl lying face down on the asphalt.

The girl's mother, Rosa, 27, and father, Javier, 32, were too distraught Thursday to talk.

Neighbors and relatives gathered in the late afternoon to build a memorial to honor the baby girl with the hazel eyes.

As he was returning home from the hospital Thursday afternoon, Olvera, flanked by his pregnant wife, said, "I am very hurt. I can't say anything else."

No arrests were made, and police were expected to finish their investigation Thursday. Police Lt. Geoff Spalding called the case "just an unfortunate accident."

Police and neighbors say the girl toddled out of her apartment through an open door and a gate that may have been unlatched.

"The little girl just ended up sneaking out," said neighbor Cecilia Shuman, 27. "I think she went looking for her mom."

Police said the girl's mother and two adult neighbors were home at the time of the accident.

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