Police: Man who hit pregnant woman, crashed into daycare in Pine Lawn was in country illegally

2012-11-30T00:00:00Z 2012-12-17T16:39:04Z Police: Man who hit pregnant woman, crashed into daycare in Pine Lawn was in country illegallyBy Joel Currier jcurrier@post-dispatch.com 314-340-8256 and Denise Hollinshed dhollinshed@post-dispatch.com 314-340-8319

PINE LAWN • Police say a man who hit a pregnant pedestrian before slamming his SUV into an empty day care center in Pine Lawn on Wednesday afternoon is in the country illegally.

The pregnant woman, Sharnay Hill, 22, of the 2600 block of Tyrell Drive in Jennings, underwent a second surgery for a broken hip and leg Thursday. She was expected to recover, and it didn’t appear her fetus was harmed, authorities said. She is about three months pregnant.

She had left the St. Louis County Health Center at 4000 Jennings Station Road when she was hit about 4 p.m. by an SUV driven by Edy Rene Perez Ramirez, originally from Guatemala but living in the 7800 block of Contour Drive in Normandy, police said.

“She saw the car coming but couldn’t get out of the way,” Pine Lawn Police Chief Rickey Collins said.

Ramirez was driving north on Jennings Station Road in a Mitsubishi Montero, then crashed into Pohsib’s Daycare at Jennings Station and Vetter Place. Collins said no one was in the day care during the crash, which he said caused significant damage to the building.

Collins said that Ramirez, 42, who smelled of alcohol and had an open container of alcohol in the SUV, was uncooperative during field sobriety tests.

Ramirez was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated. He was at DePaul Hospital and was being evaluated for any medical conditions that may have attributed to him driving erratically, Pine Lawn police Sgt. Steven Blakeney said Thursday afternoon.

Once Ramirez is released from the hospital, he will be transported back to Pine Lawn to face charges of operating a motor vehicle without a drivers license, resisting arrest, and careless and imprudent driving, authorities said.

Authorities said it appeared Ramirez had entered the country legally but had stayed beyond the time legally allowed.

Joel Currier is a breaking news reporter for STLtoday.com and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

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