Man injured in hit-and-run crash

Car hit Walter James while he crossed SR 7

Published On: May 17 2013 11:13:10 AM EDT   Updated On: May 18 2013 05:16:41 PM EDT
WEST PARK, Fla. -

The Broward Sheriff's Office is looking for the driver who hit a 52-year-old man crossing State Road 7 then drove away.

The hit-and-run crash happened at S.R. 7 and Southwest 26th Street in West Park about 5 a.m. Friday.

Walter James was crossing the northbound lanes when a vehicle hit him, BSO said. He wasn't in a crosswalk.

James' aunt, Eddie Mae Hood, didn't know what condition she would find her loved one when she visited him Friday afternoon in the intensive care unit at Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood.

"He's in a lot of pain," Hood said. "I asked him, 'Walter, where are you hurting?' And he said 'all over.'"

After James, who is mentally challenged, deaf in one ear and nearly blind in one eye, his aunt told Local 10's Baron James he was rushed to the ER in critical condition, a victim of a hit-and-run.

"He didn't know," Hood answered when asked if James remembered what happened. "Walter is slow, mentally slow. When I asked if there were any bones broken, the nurse said no. He has a fracture on his side."

A surveillance video appears to have caught on camera the immediate aftermath of the crime.

"At that time of the morning, Walter was probably coming form the club," said Hood. "He loves to dance."

In the upper-right corner of the video, based on BSO's report, it appears the hit-and-run car heads north then quickly turns right into a neighborhood, presumably as the victim laid on the ground out of the camera's view.

Afterwards, other cars seemed to slow down, but they didn't stop either. In the video, a red car does stop and not long after, deputies arrived, later seen from Sky 10 around the red car apparently talking with the good Samaritan driver.

"It's really cheap, unnecessary to hit someone and keep going," said Hood.

James was transported to Memorial Regional Hospital and was listed in fair condition on Friday afternoon.

BSO believes the vehicle may have been a 2006 to 2011, four-door, silver Honda Civic that's missing the cover of its driver's side mirror (pictured below).

"I don't know what's happening in South Florida as we have more and more hit-and-runs," said Hood. "All of them running around should just stop. Face it, you hit someone."

Anyone with information on the crash is asked to call BSO at 954-493-TIPS.