Date: May 29, 2011
Location: Beltline Highway over Interstate 5, Springfield
Names: Melissa J. White
Oregon State Police are investigating an early morning traffic crash in which the driver of an involved vehicle fled the accident scene and was later captured with the assistance of law enforcement officials.
At about 2:35am Oregon State Police and emergency crews responded to a two-vehicle crash on westbound Beltline Highway over Interstate 5. Police investigation indicated that Melissa J. White, age 38 of Eugene, was driving north on Interstate 5 and exited westbound onto Beltline Highway when she noticed that a vehicle was approaching her from behind at a high rate of speed and in an erratic manner. According to White, she tried to move her vehicle to the right to avoid the approaching vehicle to the rear, but her vehicle was struck on the driver’s side.
The other vehicle that came up behind White, a 1996 Volkswagen Jetta, struck a concrete barrier and rolled several times before coming to rest on its wheels on Beltline Highway. White reported that she saw an adult male, believed to be Hispanic, exit the vehicle and try to get rides from another car and a taxi cab. Both drivers refused and said they were calling the police.
The male then ran toward the Gateway Mall before police and fire crews arrived.
A Springfield police sergeant observed the suspect driver jumping over a fence and falling to the ground where he was captured. The suspect was transported to Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend where he was treated for a non-life threatening injury. Alcohol is a confirmed factor in this crash and criminal charges are pending.
White was checked at the scene by paramedics, but was not transported to a hospital.
Our thoughts are with Ms. White after this scary encounter, and we sincerely hope that she was uninjured in this Oregon hit-and-run car crash.
Hit-and-run is a serious violation of Oregon Vehicle Code 811.705. The hit-and-run driver must be held civilly and criminally responsible for his actions. In a case like this, Ms. White may be well advised to contact a reputed personal injury attorney with experience in hit-and-run crashes who will fight for the justice and compensation that she deserves. At Shulman DuBois, our Portland car accident lawyers believe that what happened to Ms. White is simply unacceptable; we are committed to making sure that hit-and-run drivers are held accountable for their actions and that victims receive the compensation they deserve.