Man run over, driver claims he was being robbed |

Man run over, driver claims he was being robbed

by F.T. Norton
Appeal Staff Writer

Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal Arrol Essex has handcuffs removed on Tiger Drive after neighbors reported a fight in a vehicle Friday morning. Essex says he was injured in a fight with a man he met earlier at a local casino. The man is in a Reno hospital for injuries he received after Essex allegedly ran over him.

Carson City investigators are trying to piece together what happened Friday morning when a man run over by a car claimed it happened during a dope deal gone awry, and the driver, who was beaten, said the other man was trying to rob him.

According to Carson City Sheriff’s Deputy Mark Jongsma, residents of a trailer park on Tiger Drive near Hot Springs Road called 911 on the report of a “rolling fight” at 10:49 a.m.

Jongsma said that when he arrived he saw a bloodied Arrol Essex, 27, leaning over the hood of his Honda CRX and Rene Almanza, 43, lying in the road with labored breathing and clutching bloody bills.

Jongsma said Almanza was able to tell him that he’d been run over.

And then Almanza allegedly offered, “It’s a drug deal gone bad,” the deputy said.

Essex, who was bleeding from injuries to his face, was handcuffed and as officers waited for medics to arrive, Almanza stopped breathing, said Jongsma.

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Deputy Doug Speegle and Jongsma were getting ready to administer CPR with a bag, when Jongsma tilted Almanza’s head back and he began breathing again.

Almanza was taken by ambulance to the Carson City Airport, then flown to a Reno hospital by helicopter.

At the sheriff’s department, Essex told investigators a different story.

According to Detective Craig Lowe, Essex said he’d met Almanza earlier that morning at a local casino and Almanza had asked him for a ride home. Once inside the Tiger Drive park, Almanza allegedly told Essex he was going to get some drugs. When Essex resisted, Almanza allegedly began beating him as the car moved through the park.

Near the end of the driveway, Almanza jumped out of the car and allegedly continued to punch Essex in the face.

Essex said he was trying to get away, when he inadvertently ran over Almanza.

“He said, ‘I felt the car go over him,'” Lowe said.

Essex suffered injuries to his face and arms, which Lowe described as “defensive wounds.”

Lowe said Almanza had no broken bones and no internal injuries.

“His X-rays and CAT scans all came back normal.”

Lowe said Almanza did not have any injuries consistent with a battery.

Almanza has a storied criminal past. He is a convicted felon for forgery and was arrested in recent years in Carson City on suspicion of sexual assault, being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm, possession of controlled substance and gross misdemeanor carrying a concealed weapon. The sexual assault charge was dismissed. The dispositions of the other cases are unclear.

It doesn’t appear Essex has ever been arrested in Carson City.

The investigation continues.

• Contact reporter F.T. Norton at or 881-1213.