Police Find Pickup In Parking Valet's Fatal Hit-And-Run

Jose Medina Struck While Holding Car Door Open For Patron At Rockstar Lounge

Denver police have found a pickup truck believed to be involved in a fatal hit-and-run over the weekend.

The truck was located at a home in Commerce City on Tuesday night and was impounded. Police said they were acting on a phone tip when they found it.

Police said no one has yet been arrested as a result of the truck being found. Investigators are trying to determine who was driving the truck at the time.

The truck has been impounded and is being processed for evidence.

A valet on his third night on the job was killed by a hit-and-run driver outside a downtown Denver nightclub Saturday night, police said.

Jose Medina, 21, was standing on the street, holding a car door open for a patron outside the Rockstar Lounge when he was run over, said Denver police spokesman Lt. Matt Murray.

This occurred at 940 Lincoln St. around 11:50 p.m.

The driver of a white vehicle heading north on Lincoln hit the valet, then fled, Murray added. The vehicle was last seen heading north on the major, one-way thoroughfare.

"Someone so selfishly murdered their son, and then took off without stopping," said Gabriel Schwartz, the family's attorney.

An employee at the neighboring Dazzle jazz club told 7NEWS the pickup truck plowed through the parked car's open door, hitting the valet.

Witnesses said the impact threw -- or dragged -- Medina 50 feet and bent back the door on the car he was trying to park.

Medina was taken to Denver Health Medical Center but later died, Murray said.

Medina's family said it was his third day on the job. He was working the second job, trying to earn extra money to buy his fiancee a birthday present, his family said. Her birthday was on Monday.

"They are a mess right now," said Schwartz of Medina's family. "This shouldn't have happened to him or anyone else."

Schwartz said Medina moved to Denver from Utah with his mother and girlfriend at the time about five months ago.

"Jose had a smile that would light up a room," said Schwartz.

Rockstar Lounge owner, Nicholas Zoth, told 7NEWS Reporter Jaclyn Allen the victim was hired through a valet service.

"It's rough," Zoth said. "It breaks my heart that people would just drive off."

Zoth would not comment further about the deadly hit-and-run, citing the ongoing police investigation.

Jay Chadrom owns the nearby Opal Restaurant and saw the chaos on a surveillance video that night.

"I heard that another car took the door off of a car that was parked there," said Chadrom. "It's crazy. There's a light a few feet from where the accident happened. The speed couldn't have been that much."

But people passing by weren't that surprised.

Andy Rosen, a former valet parking attendant, had stopped to look at the shattered glass still on Lincoln Street and said it can be a dangerous job, especially in a busy location like that.

"You're waiting by the driver's side door, which means you're basically standing in the street," Rosen said. "So, somebody makes a wrong move, a drunk driver swerves into you, and that's it."

The Medina family is accepting donations to help pay for funeral expenses.

Donations can be made at any Colorado State Bank and Trust location with this information: The Law Offices of Sandomire and Schwartz for the benefit of Jose Medina, Account No. 8093874893. Donations also can be mailed to to 3610 E. 1st Ave., Denver, CO.

Funeral arrangements have not been finalized and the family has not decided if it will be open to the public.

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