WOMAN STRUCK ON I-8 HAS MULTIPLE SURGERIES; HIT-AND-RUN DRIVERS STILL AT LARGE

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CHP seeks a lifted F-250 or F-350 diesel pickup similar to one in photo that struck woman and sped off. A motor home that may have witnesses is also sought.

By Jordan Damond and Miriam Raftery

June 1, 2017 (Lakeside) – It’s a mystery how a San Diego woman wound up standing on westbound Interstate 8 just west of the Lake Jennings exit in Lakeside at 4:45 a.m. on Monday, where she was struck by two vehicles that both fled the scene.

The woman has undergone multiple surgeries for major injuries.  “We’re not sure if she’s going to survive,” Officer Kevin Pearlstein with California Highway Patrol in El Cajon told ECM during an interview today.

The victim, 29, is married and lives in the Clairemont area of San Diego. She had no vehicle and climbed over a wall onto the freeway, where she stood facing traffic, arms outstretched, dressed in black, Pearlstein said.

“It’s unknown why she was out there,” he told ECM, adding that someone must have dropped her off in the area.  It’s unknown whether she may have been under the influence of alcohol or drugs.  She was transported to Sharp Memorial Hospital.

There is no information about the first vehicle that struck the woman, knocking her to the pavement.  However, a big-rig driver witnessed a second vehicle strike the woman, then flee the scene.  The witness described it as a black Ford diesel lifted F-250 or 350 pickup truck, which may have front-end damage.

California Highway Patrol also wants to speak with the driver of an off-white Bounder motorhome with a black single-axle trailer, carrying a white off-road vehicle.  The motorhome is not believed to have been involved in the accident, but CHP hopes the driver or a passenger may be able to help provide details to help locate one or both of the vehicles that struck the woman.

Officer Pearlstein believes that any responsible driver should have known they had hit something. “You are required by state law to stop when you hit something. If you don’t it’s a hit and run.”

If the driver had stopped at the scene and was sober, they would likely not have faced charges since the accident was “not their fault.,” Pearlstein said.

If found, the drivers who fled the scene will face felony hit-and-run charges.  They could face up to five or six years in prison.

Officer Pearlstein hopes that someone may know who the drivers are that fled the scene. Perhaps someone saw a neighbor washing a vehicle at an odd hour or an auto repair shop has suspicions about a vehicle they were asked to repair.

If you have any information, please call (619) 401-2000.