Pedestrian Hit and Killed by Speeding Cop Car

October 19, 2012
by Sammons & Carpenter, P.C.

Car accidents can create danger not only to other cars, but also to more vulnerable forms of transportation- like motorcycles, scooters, and bicycles. Car accidents can also be incredibly dangerous for pedestrians, who have no protection against the car. Drivers of all kinds of vehicles need to take particular care of pedestrians especially in areas where people are likely to be walking. .

Another tragic accident occurred over the weekend, involving a Georgia's police officer who was perhaps not sufficiently careful. Jaquess Harris, 26, was crossing the street early Sunday morning to go to Club Ciroc in Columbus when she was hit by Kelly MacDonell, 26, driving a Columbus police car. "Not only did she get hit, she got carried, and when the car stopped, it threw her," said Ivan Kauffmann, an eyewitness to the accident. Ms. Harris died at the scene.

Mr. Kauffmann also said there were skid marks from the police cruiser at least 30 feet long, meaning the police car could not have been going the 30-35 mile per hour speed limit. Another source said there were 100 feet skid marks. Several other eyewitnesses said the cruiser driven by MacDonell was going very fast, but did not have the emergency lights on. The cruiser's windshield was shattered and the front bumper dented from the accident, as well.

Whether or not the emergency lights need to be on depends on what kind of call the officer is responding to. Columbus Police Chief Ricky Boren told reporters that MacDonell was responding to another unit as back up at the time. Mr. Kauffmann stated that the police car lights were not turned on until after the accident. MacDonell has only been on the force for a little over a year, joining in June 2011. At the moment, he has been placed on administrative leave with pay while the Georgia State Patrol investigation is ongoing. .

Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson noted that the area where Ms. Harris was struck and killed was not very well lit, and that right now officials do not know exactly what happened. Reports say that Ms. Harris had a twin sister, and she was at the scene when Ms. Harris died. Mayor Tomlinson said, "I've already reached out to the family. I told them at the appropriate moment, I'm willing to meet with them and express the formal condolences of the city."

Atlanta Car Accident Attorney
If you or someone in your family has been involved in any kind of car accident, the Georgia car accident attorneys at Sammons & Carpenter can help you to determine if you have a case and what can be done to move forward and get you the compensation you deserve. Especially in situations like this one, where a public servant was involved, the case may be more complicated. Please call us at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation.

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