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How authorities are working to solve fatal hit-and-run incidents in Indianapolis

At least two people died this weekend in hit-and-run incidents
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Posted at 7:12 PM, Jul 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-25 22:06:27-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The message is simple for drivers in Indianapolis.

“Here in the city of Indianapolis you are required by law to stop for an accident,” IMPD Officer Samone Burris said.

And the pain is all too real for Sylvia King.

More than eight years ago King lost her son Nicholas in a traumatic brain injury that he suffered in a hit and run crash.

“Nicholas got hit on High School Road and the result of it was a massive traumatic brain injury, it was July 22, 2014 when he got hit,” Sylvia King said.

Over the weekend – at least two people lost their lives after being killed in hit and run crashes --- in these incidents like King’s – both drivers didn’t stay on the scene.

If you decide to flee the scene of an accident, especially if somebody has been injured or hurt it considered a serious crime,” Burris said.

The driver who hit Sylvia King’s son didn’t stay on the scene either.

“I think that’s the part that it made it worse, just leaving him there by himself, that makes it a little bit harder,” King said.

The City of Indianapolis is working to hopefully make roads a lot safer.

“This team will look at it from an engineering perspective after any sort of police or criminal investigation,” Ben Easley, the Chief Communications Officer for Indianapolis DPW said.

The city recently created a Fatal Crash Review Team that will make recommendations to Indy DPW about what kind of infrastructure upgrades need to be made after each deadly crash.

“Now we got those locations that we can go get outside federal funding often to make the upgrades that we know need to happen,” Ben Easley, the Chief Communications Officer for Indianapolis DPW said.

City-County Councillor Ethan Evans released the following statement about the hit-and-run that occurred on Shadeland Ave. over the weekend.

I’m sad to hear someone lost their life in a hit-and-run incident over the weekend in District 4. I want to express my condolences to the family of the victim. Saturday’s tragedy is another unfortunate example of why our city must implement urgently needed pedestrian infrastructure such as crosswalks, sidewalks, or trails along busy thoroughfares. These investments are sorely needed across the City, especially around busy thoroughfares.

This year the City-County Council passed a proposal to update the existing ‘complete streets’ ordinance established in 2012, with the purpose of addressing the needs of all residents. In partnership with the Department of Public Works, we have established a formal Fatal Crash Review Team, which includes community representatives, IMPD, DPW, and the Department of Metropolitan Development, to review fatal crashes and make recommendations for improvements at the locations where they occur.

IMPD has dedicated $1 million for traffic enforcement during peak summer months. Still, despite numerous efforts, such as DUI checkpoints and a police substation presence between the 6500 and 7900 block of Shadeland Avenue, there have been multiple car accidents and fatalities on the road in the last two years.

I know there are changes needed with many of our streets and traffic safety. In my District, some of these changes need to occur between 82nd Street and Fall Creek Road. These changes could immediately improve safety for pedestrians, drivers, and cyclists. I am more than willing to sit down with residents, the Department of Public Works, and IMPD to discuss potential solutions.

Lastly, I’m committed to being an advocate for my constituents and work to enhance safety for all. I encourage all of our residents to be mindful of everyone on our streets and drive carefully. This is still an ongoing investigation, and if anyone has information, please call 317-262-TIPS.
Ethan Evans

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