Thursday, February 26, 2009

Families plea for hit-run 'coward' to surrender

Tamara Cherry - Sun Media

The families of two women run down by a driver who left them for dead last week pleaded this afternoon for the "coward" who hit them to surrender.
Cecelia Chang, 59, was crossing McNicoll Ave. at Midland Ave., when a turning vehicle struck her around 6:15 a.m. Feb. 17. Cathleen Jones, 53, who was driving northbound at the time, stopped her car just south of the intersection and went to Chang's aid before a southbound car struck them both and fled the scene.
"Two women will probably never be the same physically or mentally ever again," Jim Jones, told reporters this afternoon at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, where his wife has remained since the collision. "Break a hip, break a pelvis, break a femur, five broken bones – it impacts your life."
While Jones' injuries were initially classified as life-threatening, she is now on the road – albeit a long one – to recovery, her husband said. "Emotionally, mentally and physically, she's hurt very badly," Alice Lee said of her sister, Chang, who is recovering from a broken pelvis and five broken ribs at Scarborough General hospital.
"Please, whoever the driver was, please come forward and report it to police right away," Lee said. "Please, don't be a coward. Be Brave."
"Subconsciously, I don't think he or she can live the rest of their life in peace, so please come forward and admit it so you will get peace in your life," Lee said.
Jones described the actions of his wife, who has come to be known as the Good Samaritan by the media and police, as "just natural" for a woman who has received first aid and CPR training.
"She's progressing quite well," he said. "She can communicate, yeah, but because of the trauma and shock, she lost memory of a lot of the stuff that happened."
"Your conscience must be eating away at you and we ask that you do the right thing," Toronto Police Det.-Const. Julie Mahoney said in a plea to the suspect. "We're asking that person to turn yourself in now before we get you, and we will."
The suspect's vehicle is likely a black, 1994-1997 Honda Accord with after-market blue headlights. The front right hub cap was left behind at the scene, and the car likely suffered damage to its front, right end.
"The vehicle may be fixed," Mahoney said. "We're asking anybody who knows somebody who owns a Honda Accord – maybe it's your neighbour, maybe it's your friend, maybe it's a family member – just go have a look at it. Just walk around nonchalantly, have a look at it, see if there's any damage there consistent with hitting a pedestrian."
"We have indication that it's traveling between 50 and 60 km/h, which is not outrageous considering that the speed limit is around there, but I mean, it is horrific when it makes contact with a human being," Mahoney said.
"We want to help, that's our nature to help. and when someone leaves somebody dead in the road or badly injured, it's always very shocking to the police."
Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-1900 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-8477,, or by texting TOR and your message to 274637

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