A soldier continues to struggle with an up-and-down recovery from a serious traffic crash last month in which he was run down by a former Lexington firefighter.
Noel Espino was in critical condition at University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital immediately after the Sept. 19 wreck. His condition improved to serious about Oct. 1, but he then slipped back to critical condition Thursday night.
On Friday, however, his condition was upgraded again to serious, according to UK Hospital.
Espino was injured about 11 p.m. Sept. 19 outside The Beer Trappe bar on Euclid Avenue when he was struck by an SUV driven by Jarad McCargo. Police said McCargo then drove away.
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McCargo was charged with DUI, leaving the scene of an accident, first-degree assault and driving without insurance. He entered a not guilty plea in district court, and his case has been sent to a Fayette County grand jury.
McCargo was a Lexington firefighter at the time of the wreck, but the city fired him four days later.
According to police, McCargo allegedly backed his Ford Expedition over the curb on Euclid. The SUV struck Espino and two people on the sidewalk, then crashed into the building that houses the Beer Trappe.
Espino was the most seriously injured victim.