Monday, March 18, 2013

Charge dropped in hit-and-run case; new suspect arrested

Posted By on Mon, Mar 18, 2013 at 10:57 AM

An important update on a case reported here earlier about a hit-and-run of a pedestrian, Lois Sandusky, 61, at Kavanaugh and Beechwood. Eyewitness testimony resulted in the arrest of the wrong person. From the LRPD's Sgt. Cassandra Davis:

CHARGE DROPPED: Against Steven Kissinger.
  • CHARGE DROPPED: Against Steven Kissinger.
On January 7th at approximately 1:10 pm officers responded to a hit and run at Kavanaugh and Beechwood. Witness advised that the pedestrian was struck by a white two or three ton truck which displayed a military tag of AAEF. Investigators ran the tag thorough ACIC and located 26 military tags which displayed AAEF. One of those returns to a two ton truck, white and registered to Steven Kissinger. A witness identified Mr. Kissinger as the driver of the vehicle that struck the pedestrian. Mr. Kissinger was arrested and charged with careless and prohibited driving and leaving the scene of an accident. Upon further investigation investigators determined that although Mr. Kissinger’s truck was similar in color and style to the suspect vehicle, it was not the vehicle involved in the hit and run. Investigators also determined that although Mr. Kissinger resembled the suspect he was not the driver of the vehicle that struck the pedestrian. The case against Mr. Kissinger has been Nolle Prosequi [not prosecuted].

NEW SUSPECT: Claude Smith.
  • KATV
  • NEW SUSPECT: Claude Smith.
Additional investigation developed Mr. Claude Smith as the driver of the vehicle that struck the victim. On March 18, 2013, at 10:00 Mr. Claude Smith, w/m, 9/29/70 turned himself in to Judge Lightle’s court and was charged with one count each of Felony Hit & Run, Careless & Prohibited, Failure to Yield to Pedestrian in a Crosswalk, Driving on a Suspended D.L., Expired Vehicle Registration and No Insurance.

In response to a question, Sgt. Davis said Smith also had a special plate bearing those letters on his truck.

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