AUBURN, Ala. — Wednesday night’s traffic accident marked the second pedestrian in less than a week to lose their life after being struck by a car in Auburn.
Around 7:40 PM Wednesday evening, Auburn Police, fire and East Alabama Medical Center paramedics responded to a call of an accident involving a pedestrian and a vehicle on South College Street near Harmon Drive.
Police say a 51-year-old man attempted to cross the northbound lane of South College Street when a 2003 Ford Escape struck him. The man was taken to EAMC’s Emergency Room where he later died as a result of his injuries.
Police say the driver remained at the scene and fully cooperated with police, and was then allowed to leave the scene.
Captain Lorenza Dorsey of the Auburn Police Division said that during the investigation, investigators look to see if there were any factors involved such as speed, impairment of the driver or pedestrian, reckless driving and more. The incident was determined to be a traffic accident. Once it is determined to be a traffic accident, the traffic accident team comes in and looks into it.
Captain Dorsey added that depending on the results of the investigation, the case may be presented to the district attorney where it then could be presented to a grand jury to verify the findings of the investigation.
Last Thursday, Auburn Police say 24 year old Felipe Pablo Domingo was struck by a vehicle driven Nicholas Osceola Dean Lawhon at Shelton Mill Road near East University Drive. Domingo was taken to EAMC where he died from his injuries.
Police said Lawhon left the scene before police arrived, thus making the case a little tougher to solve. Police said the case required a more in-depth investigation to find the person responsible. Police reached out to the FBI, State Forensic Department, auto specialists to look at evidence from the scene. Police said that evidence led them to a specific vehicle and a full-scale search was underway. The vehicle was found with damage that was consistent of an accident.
Domingo had a non-government issued id, and they are asking the public’s help so they can notify any family. Anyone with information on the case is encouraged to call detectives at 334-501-3140 or the anonymous tip line at 334-246-1391.
Public Safety Director Bill James said two pedestrians losing their lives in less than a week is not common, but these incidents should raise awareness for those to be on the lookout for one another on the road.
“If you’ve got a vehicle that weighs two,three thousand pounds and you’re on a bicycle or you are a pedestrian, it’s not going to turn out well if there is a collision,” James said. “I think it is just very important that everybody is mindful of that and sees the incidents that we have so closely together that they are more cognizant of being on the road.”
James urged both pedestrians and drivers to tune out all distractions while on the road, make eye contact with a driver before crossing into the road, being aware of surroundings.
Folks are also urged to wear clothing that makes you visible if you are out on the road at night, have proper identification.
Next week the city will roll out their annual safe travel campaign called “Travel With Care.” The campaign is focused on ensuring that everyone on the road looks out for one another and knows the rules of the road.