SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) – A victim of a hit-and-run attack in Carmichael last week returned home from the hospital Tuesday.
Nikki Harris told FOX40 that she’s taking her recovery day by day and has a long way to go, both physically and emotionally.
Sacramento County investigators say Jorge Zepeda struck Harris with a vehicle after hitting and killing another victim.
“Mostly I’m just thinking about the guy that got hurt, I mean killed,” Harris said through tears. “I think about him a lot actually.”
With a broken leg stabilized by a rod that will stay with her for the rest of her life, Harris says her thoughts are not about her own pain, but instead are about the man she saw lose his life.
“Something so tragic had happened to somebody, you know?” she said.
Her compassion for others is what may have put her in harm’s way.
After witnessing the initial hit and run, the 33-year-old mother of three children jumped in to help.
Moments later, Harris says the hit-and-run suspect made her the next target.
“So, I ran out of the way as fast as I could and I wasn’t fast, because that is when he ran over me, my leg,” Harris recalled. “Rolling and eaching out to people, I was crying out for help.”
Injured and overwhelmed by the moment, Harris says a stranger eventually answered her pleas and held her hand while telling her it was going to be OK.
“I was really wanting that, I was needing that, I was scared, I felt like I was alone and on top of that, I am hurting,” Harris said.
On Tuesday night, Harris was able to go home with a walker to help keep her mobile while she heals.
Her boyfriend, Jon Anderson, is by her side.
The two say they will emerge from the tragedy stronger than ever.
“Solidifies that bond even more,” Anderson said.
“I think all of us are going to get through this together,” Harris said. “Not just my family but all the other families involved too. In a way, we are kind of all connected now.”
Harris says she would be interested in participating in the upcoming court proceedings for Zepeda, either as a witness or just to be in attendance, because she says she wants to learn the reason behind the attack.
Investigators have not released a motive in the case.
Zepeda is scheduled to be arraigned virtually Wednesday.