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Food truck owners seek help finding hit-and-run driver who left them without a livelihood

They're looking for a dark-colored, 2008-2012 Jeep Liberty with heavy front-end damage
Food truck owners seek help finding hit-and-run driver who left them without a livelihood
Posted at 5:23 PM, Apr 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-04 12:12:28-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — A local couple who built a small business from scratch are all of a sudden without a livelihood, after a driver totaled their food truck and fled the scene.

Stephanie Curtis and her husband saw an under-served market

“When you’re at a festival, there’s not a lot of options for a healthier food or just anything green,” Curtis said. “We knew we wanted to make a food truck.”

And then, they saw it.

That beaten up, barely running 1980’s Chevy school bus

“It’s from Edison School District,” she said. “We were able to get it for a cheap price.”

It was perfect.

“Both of us had worked in restaurants most of our lives,” Curtis said. “And both of us worked in schools, so it was the perfect blend between the two.”

So perfect--they didn’t care how much it cost--

“Over time I think we’re about $6000 to $8000 in equipment,” she said.

--Or how much sweat equity it took--

“My husband spent so much time building it out,” Curtis said. “He learned to be an electrician, he learned to be a plumber, he learned how to do flooring.”

--They were determined to make the bus into their one of a kind salad bar on wheels named ‘Salad or Bust.’

It’s been up and running the past couple years.

“Our favorite thing is to go to the music festivals and be able to hang out there and chat with people, meet new people,” she said.

But then late last month--

“We were just sitting inside, it was about 11:30, we were headed to bed,” Curtis said. “We heard a huge loud crash.”

Apparently that big, bright yellow bus, parked just outside their house on Walnut Street, was just too hard for one driver to see.

“I came running outside, and as I got outside, the vehicle had gotten itself disconnected and started down the road,” she said.

That hit and run driver left rendered their livelihood unusable.

“It’s disconnected all of the piping that my husband put in,” she said. “You can see that the floor is completely buckled… I mean they broke steel.”

The driver was nice enough to leave a little gift behind.

“We actually have part of its front fender, and we also have the wheel well that it came with,” Curtis said. “That’s why we know that it’s a really dark, dark colored Jeep Liberty.”

A 2008-2012 model to be exact--that info thanks to serial numbers on the parts left behind. She thinks she saw a Colorado license plate on it beginning with the numbers 126.

But even with all that information--

“The officer explained to us that hit-and-runs, typically, they’re not able to be caught,” Curtis said.

She feels like she’s been hit again.

“It’s definitely created a situation for us where we are trying to figure out how much more we can spend to keep this,” she said.

Unless of course, someone finds that driver.

If you have any information to help her find who did this, please notify Colorado Springs Police.