An elderly resident of the Gresham neighborhood in Chicago was hit and killed by a car on Wednesday, just before the man was to celebrate his 77th birthday. The incident occurred near the intersection of 83rd Street and Racine during the morning hours. All of the details are not clear at this time but there was at least one eye witness to the event. When asked about the crash, the eye witness stated that the black car involved was speeding and traveling at least 80 miles per hour when he struck the 77-year-old victim, killing him. The driver then reportedly fled the scene without checking on the condition of the man or calling for help.
By Thursday morning, family members of the victim were hoping that the at-fault driver would turn himself in. The victim was a Korean War veteran and beloved by his family members who had planned to celebrate his birthday. Now, through the negligence of another, they are planning the man’s funeral.
Local police have not yet located the individual driving the car involved in the crash and they are looking for information regarding a 2002-2005 dark, two door Mercedes Benz C230 to question the driver. If you have any information regarding this crash, you are asked to call your local police department.
Anyone who is involved in a car accident in Illinois is required by the law to remain at the scene. Parties must speak to police officers and be cleared to leave by those same police officers so that the police can obtain necessary information regarding the accident. Failure to stay at the scene of a crash is a crime and when a victim of the crash is seriously injured or dies, a fleeing driver may be found liable of a felony and sentenced to serious prison time.
In some accidents, a hit-and-run driver places a victim at greater risk of death or permanent injury by leaving the scene and failing to call for help. Often victims who are hurt are not able to reach a cell phone or are unconscious, making them incapable of calling for an ambulance. If another driver causes the crash, it is that driver’s duty to call for help.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that nationally, nearly one out of every five pedestrian deaths are caused by hit-and-run drivers. That means that in almost 20 percent of the cases where a pedestrian dies, the driver of a car, truck, or van flees the scene and disregards any responsibly he or she may have under the law. If some of these fleeing drivers stayed to help their victims, it is possible that fewer pedestrian deaths would result.