Thursday, October 15, 2009

Update on 26th and Emerson Car Crash

Guest post and photos by the Hawthorne Hawkman

I had a chance to speak with the family affected today, and got a few details squared away. The accident happened early on Saturday morning. While it has been described as a "hit and run," the vehicle that crashed into the parked car did NOT drive away. However, the driver and any other passengers did flee on foot and have not been caught.

I am working with Yia Yang and Jay Clark at CURA to help this family work through the process as there is a ton of red tape to unravel. For instance, it's not even clear if the insurance company towed the vehicle or it was brought to a city impound lot. There are also other issues on this block and the family would like to sit down with a 4th precinct police officer to discuss things. Hawthorne is doing what it can to help in that regard as well.

ADDENDUM: This was posted to the first post by an officer who responded to the call. It seems that the confusion may be more around the bewilderment any of us would feel in this situation, but I still say we need more Hmong police officers in the 4th Precinct. And I thank this officer for his service.

"Parts of this report are simply untrue. I was a responding Officer on this crash. The suspect vehicle was undrivable and towed to the impound lot.

That night, I did utilize a Hmong speaking officer over the phone in describing what needed to be done A) giving him a case number and B) instructing him to contact his insurance company.

If a Hmong officer would not have been available, I would have contacted the language line available to us on our city cell phones.

No suspects were arrested at the scene, despite having another squad car (K-9 Officer) searching the area.

It is a terrible tradgedy, and the couple seemed very nice, even under the circumstances.

I can empathize with members of the Hmong culture who do not trust the police. But what can I realistically do? All I can do is try to build those bridges on every call I go on."

(Do not click "

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