Pedestrian Struck In/Out Of Crosswalk

Thomas MacMillan PhotoAn 18-year-old girl told police she was in the crosswalk when she was hit by a car on Farnham Avenue on Tuesday night. The 83-year-old woman who hit her told cops the teen wasn’t using the crosswalk.

The teen was treated and discharged from Yale-New Haven Hospital on Tuesday night.

Here’s what happened, according to a police report prepared by New Haven cop Officer Matthew Myers:

Just past 6 p.m., the driver of a 1999 Oldsmobile Intrigue struck a pedestrian on Farnham Avenue near the corner of Wintergreen Avenue, on the Southern Connecticut State University campus. The driver told police she had been driving at a “slow rate of speed” and didn’t see the 18-year-old pedestrian as she walked in front of the car. The driver added that the teen wasn’t in the crosswalk.

The pedestrian, however, told cops that the driver failed to stop as she was crossing the street—within the crosswalk.

Several witnesses were unable to corroborate either story, the report states.

The driver was not found to be at fault.

Police Probe 2 Shootings

In other police news, according to police spokesman Officer Joe Avery:

An 18-year-old was shot near the corner of Grand Avenue and Poplar Street in Fair Haven at 10:56 p.m. on Tuesday. The victim was hit twice in his torso and once in his ankle. His injuries were non-life-threatening. He told police he’d been shot during a street robbery.

Less than half an hour later, at 11:20 p.m. police responded to another shooting, at George Street and Winthrop Avenue in the West River neighborhood. They found a 21-year-old man with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to the right shoulder. He told cops that he and his brother were walking on Winthrop when a man fired three shots at them from a burgundy van with tinted windows. The victim was take to Yale-New Haven Hospital for treatment.

Cops: 3 Stores Sold Booze To Minors

State liquor control announced on Wednesday that three New Haven stores are being cited for selling alcohol to minors. The charges stem from an undercover operation on Saturday. Three “youth volunteers” working with New Haven police and state liquor control tried to buy booze in 64 grocery and package stores in New Haven. Only three stores failed the test.

They are, according to the state:

Shop Smart, 284 Putnam Street, New Haven
Country Market, 13 Shelton Avenue, New Haven
Newhall Package Store, 332 Newhall Street, New Haven

The stores will have an opportunity to respond to the charges in an administrative hearing.

“Given the number of stores tested, these are very good results,” Consumer Protection Commissioner Jerry Farrell said in a press release. “I congratulate New Haven and thank its local permittees for their vigilance in observing the law. Please keep up the good work.”


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posted by: anon on December 8, 2010  5:18pm

In many places, the “most powerful vehicle” (typically the driver) is ALWAYS held at fault in the case of pedestrian/cyclist crashes:—says-Government-advisor.html

In addition to building roads that encourage drivers to travel at slow speeds, this is one of the best ways to make drivers more cautious and reduce injuries.  Let’s implement such a law in Connecticut.

It’s also worth noting here that pedestrians are usually killed if a vehicle hits them at about 30 miles per hour, whereas they usually survive if the driver is going 20. That’s why we have a 20 mile per hour speed limit.

If this elderly driver had been going just a few miles per hour faster, the SCSU student would probably still be in the hospital, or worse. 

Kudos to the city’s transportation department for putting in the in-street pedestrian signs, which typically reduce speeds by a couple miles per hour, enough to save people’s lives.  But it is a shame that their signs aren’t left in year-round, as they are in many other snowy cities.

posted by: nfjanette on December 8, 2010  6:15pm

In many places, the “most powerful vehicle” (typically the driver) is ALWAYS held at fault in the case of pedestrian/cyclist crashes

Every time you post this, I will reply that it is mistaken policy that removes much-needed responsibility - as clearly shown in recent New Haven history - from being shared cyclists and especially pedestrians.  It is nothing less than a miracle than more jay-walking Yale and SCSU students are not, God forbid, struck as they walk out directly into the path of moving vehicles without a marked crossing.

posted by: Eli Antonio on December 9, 2010  7:20am

Two wheels good four wheels bad :)

no really though, the s.c.s.u. kids are all over the streets, back to traffic, ipods blasting, just generally being, well, kind of stupid.  I’m sure the bike mob though will see this as another case to ban cars.
Hey elm city cycling, it’s 12 degrees out today, how are YOUR kids getting to school?  Mine will be warm and safe in MY CAR.  You guys gonna blast me for that?

posted by: William Kurtz on December 9, 2010  11:16am

People should certainly take responsibility for their own safety but on a side note, it’s time to stop fetishizing the striped crossing.

They’re certainly a useful reminder that people can be expected to be walking in them.  But anyone who walks anywhere knows that right now, they’re suggestions at best for impatient, inattentive and aggressive drivers.  You still need to look both ways and make sure that drivers are paying attention, which you can’t ever assume.

By the same token, it’s time to come off of the idea that a pedestrian who is not in a striped crosswalk is somehow fair game. 

For example:

Look at the satellite view of this area on Google maps and find the nearest striped crosswalk. Fun game!

posted by: streever on December 9, 2010  11:56am

“The driver was not found to be at fault.”

Although she admitted she didn’t see a person directly in front of her car? I’m sorry, maybe she needs to step away from the automobile. If the girl was 5 feet away from the crosswalk or directly in it, what does it matter? The driver should have seen her.

I think the real story here is this driver may need a new prescription or some re-testing.

posted by: Meghan on December 9, 2010  3:18pm

I was one of the witnesses to the incident. It’s funny they say no witnesses were able to corroborate either story when we all told police upon arrival that the girl was struck in the crosswalk but the quickly moving vehicle, who simply wasn’t stopping.

posted by: anon on December 9, 2010  4:50pm

Meghan, Have you considered calling the state’s attorney general’s office to investigate this? Perhaps the NHPD are not doing their duty here. It is up to citizens to speak up when they see injustice, if they ever want anything to change. From what you say, it sounds like the police showed great prejudice towards the pedestrian and that the only way to provide redress would be for law enforcement authorities to prosecute the driver for criminal negligence.

posted by: Meghan on December 9, 2010  4:56pm

To be honest I hadn’t considered that. However, maybe I will.  I am not advocating for criminal prosecution of the elderly woman, as I do feel bad for her.  However, witnesses told the police she was driving fast, the girl was in the crosswalk and the car wasn’t stopping.  I’m thinking maybe it’s simply enough to have the woman re-take her driving test???? Think of how fast criminal action would’ve been taken had the girl been in critical or fatal condition.  I’m not saying arrest the woman, but at least get the story straight!!!

posted by: William Kurtz on December 9, 2010  7:59pm

Case in point: fewer than 45 minutes ago, at 6:13 (yes, I looked) I was nearly hit by a New Haven police officer as he drove down Temple St. which I was crossing at Wall. 

He was about less than halfway down the block when I stepped off the curb.  He was at least driving at a reasonable rate of speed and I was about a third of the way in the striped crosswalk.  There were no sirens and the officer was approaching a red light with several cars at it—in other words, there was no sign of an emergency situation and he was in no apparent hurry, but he was looking at something other than the road in front as he passed me. 

Raise your hand if you doubt that my word would have been rejected in the event that I had been hit, while doing everything right.

I wasn’t hit—I was paying attention and it quickly became clear that he wasn’t going to stop, if he even saw me in the first place.