BROWARD COUNTY, Fla. – Jonathan Patterson said it was just in his nature to help a complete stranger on the side of the road earlier this month.
“It’s just what good people do. It’s what humans should do,” he said.
But in the blink of an eye, his life forever changed after a hit-and-run driver struck him on the street, severing the lower part of his leg.
Detectives with the Broward Sheriff’s Office said the crash happened June 3rd, at about 12:15 a.m.
Patterson said he noticed a motorist in a Ford Mustang stranded in the turn lane on Cypress Creek Road at Dixie Highway. Seconds after Patterson walked over to help the man in the disabled vehicle, he said he saw another car making a turn.
“The moment I start talking, I hear tires start screeching around the corner. The guy hops the curb and then guns it straight for me,” Patterson recalled. “Next thing I know I’m on the ground.”
He noticed blood.
“Severed leg. Foot’s on the ground - bleeding out - blood everywhere,” he said.
Patterson said he used his belt as a tourniquet. His attorney, Alex Jean, said Patterson’s determination and quick thinking likely saved his life.
BSO detectives said the driver who took off was in a Lexus GS 350, likely between model years 2013 and 2016 and with heavy front-end damage.
Even after nearly two weeks in the hospital, daily physical therapy, and phantom pain in the leg, Patterson said he does not regret helping someone else.
“I look at it like: I traded my leg for his life. He could have been standing there,” he said.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Broward Sheriff’s Office or Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS.