RALEIGH N.C. (WNCN) — The family of 12-year-old Samantha Briggs, who died in a November hit-and-run, stood beside police Friday thanking them for ending a six-month-long search for the driver of the car.
“Even though justice had been served. My heart is still trying to figure out how to heal,” sister Dakisha Holmes said. “These last six months have been very hard for us due to having no evidence to rely on.”
Blanca Escobar-Roblero is charged in the fatal hit-and-run. Police said her husband, Wilmer Morales-Roblero, then helped her burn the car in an effort to destroy evidence.
Raleigh police say they found a piece of the car left at the scene on Hillsborough Street on Nov. 25 and identified the make and model, a white Honda Civic.
“With about 1,400 of those vehicles registered in Wake County alone, locating a suspect was a daunting task,” Police Special Operations Maj. Rico Boyce said.
When the case went cold, police passed out flyers multiple times. But, it took a tip from a community member who saw the story on the news that led police to where the car was allegedly burned by the couple and towed in Franklin County.
Police said they also tracked the couple’s phone data that placed Blanca at the scene of the hit-and-run, and her husband at the lot where the car was burned.
Police Chief Estella Patterson said this case is a prime example of the power of public tips.
“We would not have been able to solve this crime and bring the alleged suspects to justice without the diligence of the members of the public,” Patterson said. “The team was relentless. They said that we can’t let this one go. We’ve got to continue to do this.”
Blanca is charged with felony hit and run while her husband is charged with accessory after the fact. Both were released on bond.
Police said they have investigated more than 1,650 hit-and-run wrecks this year ranging from minor damage to pedestrian-involved crashes, none this year have been fatal.