Austin emergency room worker’s car stolen, later found burned


AUSTIN (KXAN)– “Everyone in the ER is in kind of a heightened sense of anxiety in a way,” Vicky Chiri, who works at St. David’s hospital, said.

Chiri helps register patients and although she says new safety measures are in place during the pandemic, she remains overly cautious.

“Every single person that goes into that hospital, no matter what type of job– even our cafeteria workers– at this point, everyone is getting exposed,” Chiri says.

Now, she’s got another concern.

On her way to work an extra shift over the weekend, she walked outside and her car was missing.

“I walked out to get into my car on Sunday morning and my car was gone,” Chiri says.

Chiri says she posted about her missing car in a neighborhood Facebook group.

A few hours later, a neighbor spotted the silver car nearby– crashed into a shrub and burned inside.

“Who would do this? It was very frustrating. What was the point of burning it? What was the point of trashing it? What was the point of any of it?” Chiri says.

Chiri say she doesn’t mind the longer commute to work by bus, but just worries about walking to and from the bus stop late at night. Her shift typically ends at 11 p.m., she says.

Her sisters have now started a GoFundMe page to help the healthcare worker buy a new used car.

“I’m so overwhelmed, I don’t know how to say thank you,” Chiri says about the dozens of donors, so far.

Austin Police say they are investigating the incident and Chiri hopes police can catch the suspect before they target someone else.

“What if this had happened to, like a single mom, and she didn’t have that support system? I don’t want this to happen to someone else that doesn’t have the support that I do,” Chiri says.

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