Archive for Sunday, January 31, 2010

Lawrence woman seriously injured in hit-and-run accident

A pedestrian was injured early Sunday in a car-pedestrian hit-and-run accident near the intersection of 28th Street and Lawrence Avenue.

January 31, 2010, 2:38 a.m. Updated February 1, 2010, 12:00 a.m.


A pedestrian was seriously injured early Sunday in a car-pedestrian hit-and-run accident in southwest Lawrence.

According to a media release from Lawrence Police Capt. Paul Fellers, officers were dispatched to the 2700 block of Lawrence Avenue about 1:15 a.m. in reference to a leaving-the-scene injury accident. Witnesses at the scene said a vehicle traveling southbound on Lawrence Avenue struck a 32-year-old Lawrence woman and continued driving.

The woman suffered serious injuries and was transported by air ambulance to an area hospital. Additional information on the victim was not available Sunday night.

As of Sunday night the suspect vehicle — described as light-colored, possibly silver — had not yet been located and no arrests had been made. Fellers stated in the release that the vehicle is likely to have front-end damage.

Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call the Lawrence Police Department at 832-7501 or Crime Stoppers at 843-TIPS (8477).

Check back at for more information on this incident as it becomes available.


Alabamastreet 8 years, 3 months ago

I hope the person recovers. West Lawrence is a dangerous place these days, glad I live near downtown.

workinghard 8 years, 3 months ago

Maybe they should have to take a breathalyzer test before they can drive when leaving a bar parking lot and downtown area, would stop at least those not at parties. I know, just wishful thinking, not practical. Best wishes for victim.

Monica Miller 8 years, 3 months ago

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dolphins4321 8 years, 3 months ago

We already know what will happen......a week in the douglas county jail over spring break so they don't miss school.

vinividivici 8 years, 3 months ago

My favorite bar in MN pays for a cab for anyone willing to submit to a breathalyzer before the leaving the premises.

What I don't understand is that bartenders have the right to refuse anyone a drink for any reason, so why do they continue to serve people who are obviously drunk?

I know, these problems are not the bartenders fault, but a little discerning judgement on their behalf could encourage patrons to behave better in public.

middlemgmt 8 years, 3 months ago


Bars are open for people to drink. If they refused to serve those who are drunk, they would go out of buisness. It's not their job to say when someone has had too much. The person drinking should have a ride home or call a cab.

It's unfortunate that someone would make such a poor choice and then also run from the person who needed medical help.

gphawk89 8 years, 3 months ago

Lots of comments about the driver being drunk, but I don't see anything about alcohol in the article.

Kat Christian 8 years, 3 months ago

I feel bad for this gal and I hope she recovers soon. But a word of advice for everyone walking out at night. Wear Light Colored Clothing. I was driving home last night and was startled by a person who had just walked between two cars and could barely see them. Thank God I was driving slow and they had a light colored bag in their hand. Please if you are going to walk at night wear light colored clothing or put a strip of reflective tape on your coat (buy at any bike shop or Walmart). Be Safe and Think Safety.

jpreiner 8 years, 3 months ago

The media release was obtained directly from the Law Enforcement Center Sunday morning. The LPD site is currently not 100% functional.

Joe Preiner

Stephanie Harris 8 years, 3 months ago

Do they have any idea what happened? Did the car hit her as she was crossing 28th via Lawrence Ave.? Did the car jump the curb and hit her as she was walking on 28th or on Lawrence? I hope she is ok!! We live a street over...this is very scary!!!

verity 8 years, 3 months ago

The best of wishes to the young lady for a speedy recovery.

I second Sunshine on this. As a person who likes to walk, I have found that Lawrence is not a friendly town for walkers. Yes, drivers of vehicles are supposed to watch for and stop for pedestrians, but often they don't and I'm not going to argue with several tons of steel.

It's also easy when one is walking to think that you are more visible than you are. Remember that the driver may be looking out for other traffic and not expecting a pedestrian---or just not paying attention.

RoeDapple 8 years, 3 months ago

"Because of the sensitive nature of this story, editors are approving comments before they go live. Comments that are submitted will be reviewed quickly by an editor, and will be posted if they meet our specific guidelines for these comment threads. If they don't meet those guidelines, they may be allowed to go live later, or they may be deleted from the system."

I must say I have put a comment or two up without thinking it through then wishing I hadn't. The above comment is probably the best I have seen in some time.

Thank you LJW staff

Amy Heeter 8 years, 3 months ago

I cannot believe this has happened again. Why would a person hit someone and not check to see if they were alright?

Crystal Patterson 8 years, 3 months ago

Assuming this was an impaired driver (I realize there are other reasons that someone would leave the scene of an accident) it's really awful that impaired drivers in this town have realized that by fleeing the scene of an accident and sobering up before turning themselves in can get them out of the added and more serious charges of DUI. The inclusion of DUI or OUI to the injury or death of someone is years of prison time. Unfortunately, I'm not really sure how our city can do anything about it.

puddleglum 8 years, 3 months ago

my hopes for a full recovery.........and prosecution.

Kris_H 8 years, 3 months ago

Too much speculation, entirely. Nobody at this point except the people directly involved knows whether alcohol or drugs were a contributing factor with either party.

I hope the young woman recovers and the vehicle driver owns up to his or her part of the responsibility. Everyone needs to be more careful; Lawrence is full of pedestrians and extra drivers at this time of year!

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 3 months ago

"Remember that the driver may be looking out for other traffic and not expecting a pedestrian–or just not paying attention." My own daughter was hit while crossing Sixth at Michigan. Several years ago I witnessed a near accident at 9th and Mass when a driver turning right onto 9th almost ran over a blind man. His seeing eye dog saved him by literally jerking him back onto the corner. The driver didn't stop. These were people in designated crosswalks with clear signals obeying the law. They have a right to be there. "Just not paying attention" is no excuse for sloppy driving. If you won't or can't pay attention then you don't need to be on the road in a vehicle weighing over a thousand pounds.

Richard Heckler 8 years, 3 months ago

Yes motor vehicles have many blind spots. This is something that strikes me as I am driving.

Pedestrians and cyclists have far more view as to the whereabouts of motor vehicles however motor vehicles simply do not have this same advantage. Which is why choosing colors of clothing might be important. Eye catching colors. Most dark colors blend with outdoor surroundings. Drivers need a lot of help.

Also texting and cell phones are considered equally as distracting/dangerous as DUI. Douglas County lost a deputy sheriff at 8 AM one morning due to a cell phone talker running him over from behind.

There is no excuse for leaving someone lay in the street. This is the second one for Lawrence in a short period of time. This demands stiff mandated punishment coming from the city commission.

This country needs a CURRENT national database that includes names of folks who have had driving privileges suspended. The data should be accessed before selling a car,before one can obtain a drivers license,obtain car insurance or license a vehicle. In essence I'm saying motor vehicle ownership is over and must sell off existing vehicles.

Steve Jacob 8 years, 3 months ago

27th and Lawrence is a tough intersection. I see so many rolling stops. Southbound, you don't see 27th St. until you get a few feet away from the stop sign.

GardenMomma 8 years, 3 months ago

I don't know whether or not alcohol was involved in this accident, but I'd like to address the statements above that state that the bar owners are not responsible and continue to serve inebriated patrons for the reason of losing business.

I do believe that it IS the responsibility of the bar owners to not serve alcohol to a patron that is already obviously over-the-limit. I have worked in several bars that was always the case when serving "drunk people." As a waitress, I have "cut people off" many times.

The drinking establishment can be fined if they are found to be contributing to an already intoxicated person's further consumption and that person goes out and has an accident. I believe it is called a Dram Shop Law.

Hilary Morton 8 years, 3 months ago

Just wanted to mention that people don't have to be at a bar to consume alcohol.

It is a shame that this continues to happen in this town. We all need to be a little more aware of one another, and also be respectful enough to get out of your car when you hit someone. That is inexcusable, drunk or not drunk.

GardenMomma 8 years, 3 months ago

I sure hope the woman is okay. I hope the driver turns him/herself in.

My thoughts are with this woman and her family.

bearded_gnome 8 years, 3 months ago

No update, I hope the woman can heal and recover!

apart from the question of whether the driver was impaired,

*I wonder if the "passenger car" was one of the dangerously quiet new hybrids? one of these could sneak up on her and hit her without her hearing it coming.

are there sidewalks there or was she forced to walk in the street?

it is very troubling that if the driver is a drunk, leaving the scene, driver, past history indicates that he/she can avoid major consequences if just dodge the law until sobered up.

bearded_gnome 8 years, 3 months ago

I applaud LJWorld for 'moderating' here, this is appropriate.

Sad to see Merrill trying to inject his antidriving agenda into this. he opposes all driving.

Iknownothing 8 years, 3 months ago

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verity 8 years, 3 months ago


I wasn't and would never excuse sloppy/dangerous driving, I was just saying that the pedestrian is much more vulnerable and is not always as visible as they might think they are. Doesn't matter how right you are---the car wins every time.

I, too, have almost been hit while legally crossing a street in a crosswalk because the driver was watching for traffic and not for a pedestrian. Now I make sure the driver sees me before I step out. Should I have to? Probably not, but I'd rather not take that chance.

I hope your daughter was not badly injured and recovered completely.

leeroy_johnson 8 years, 3 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Jonathan Kealing 8 years, 3 months ago

Hi all,

A couple of comments that were meant to be rejected were inadvertently approved because our moderation queue doesn't work perfectly on my BlackBerry. Hence, why you saw some comments that shouldn't have been approved, but are now approved. Sorry for the confusion.

Jonathan Kealing Online editor

Frank Smith 8 years, 3 months ago

Kansas unfortunately does not have a dram shop law that would prohibit serving an intoxicated person. This has been a problem for many years and the legislature should address it. In the absence of such laws, the state supreme court has dismissed cases brought by victims of drunk drivers. If bartenders and bar owners have no liability, they are much less inclined to cut off a clearly intoxicated patron.

It also may be difficult to determine the level of impairment of a customer. Obviously, if anyone drinks five or more drinks in a hour, say, they are not going to be fit to drive. But some people can drink that much or more and not be visibly impaired.

While there's no proof that the hit and run driver was drunk, or that the driver had been drinking in a bar, on any Friday or Saturday night there's a large proportion of drivers who are impaired. I've seen figures some years ago that it was about 10% and I expect that percentage would go up with the lateness of the hour.

The chances of a driver who hits a pedestrian not stopping are hugely increased if that driver has been drinking.

I've held two drunken drivers for the police in two different states. At midday In Wichita a few months ago I saw a driver deliberately racing through a red light, turning around and running another light at in excess of 40 mph, not slowing at all at either intersection. The driver crossed Broadway twice, a heavily traveled street. It wasn't that the lights had just turned either. I called it in, described the car and discovered the police had been chasing him (or less likely, her) and I hope they used my info to finally apprehend the driver.

Obviously, there are some divers so irresponsible and dangerous that they should not be allowed to operate a vehicle. In this instance, it appears that the victim may suffer permanent brain damage.

The police can't be everywhere. I think that it's the shared responsibility of every citizen to help get such drivers off the street or otherwise hold them accountable for their perhaps lethal behavior. I can't imagine that there's not someone in Lawrence who might be able to provide helpful information to see that this hit and run driver is turned in.

After all, at minimum, realize that you or your loved ones could be next.

Al 8 years, 3 months ago

As of Feb. 2, Krystyn is still in critical condition at the Kansas University Medical Center. Her pelvic is broken in two places, broken ribs, internal injuries, and they had to operate on her brain to relieve pressure. Krystyn is the mother of three children; her youngest was born in October. She had just gotten off work and going to her car when she was hit. Krystyn grew up in Chase, Kansas. A fund has been set up at First Bank in Chase to help defray expenses.

sherrylynnk 8 years, 3 months ago

I met Krystyns mom in the waiting room. She had Krystyns baby with her. I'm trying to get ahold of her to see how Krystyn is doing. If anyone knows her please have her contact me. I was there because my daughter was donating a kidney...she'll remember me. :)

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