Friday, November 20, 2009

Cops hunt hit & run driver

Don Peat of Sun Media, Toronto Sun, Friday November 20, 2009

Toronto Police are hunting a chronic hit-and-run driver who went on a drug-fuelled car ride that ended with three separate car crashes in five minutes.

The Nov. 11 triple smash up sent three women to hospital with serious injuries, but when cops caught up to the last crash scene around Kingston Rd. and Midland Ave., the suspect's vehicle was there but he was long gone.

Although the unlicensed driver's Nissan Pathfinder was too damaged to keep going, he wasn't, and he ran away.

Richard Atanasoff, 45, of Whitby, is wanted on warrants on charges including dangerous operation of a vehicle causing bodily harm, break and enter, three counts of failing to stop at the scene of an accident and four counts of failing to comply with probation. He is described as white, 6 feet tall, 180 pounds and has brown hair.

Const. Tony Vella said the man broke into a house just before 6 p.m. where a child was home alone. He asked if the mother was home and when the child said no, he waited there. "The child was uninjured and he ran off," Vella said.

The three women, aged 55, 36 and 37, that were injured in the crashes weren't as lucky. They were treated in hospital for serious but non-life-threatening injuries.

Police hope they can track him down before he gets behind the wheel again.

"... We're afraid that something may occur again to the point where someone gets killed," Vella said.

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