Local man hit by car on Main Street in Breckenridge
District Attorney’s Office is continuing to investigate
A Summit County man was injured after being hit by a car on Main Street in Breckenridge last week, according to the Breckenridge Police Department.
At about 12:30 a.m. June 20, Breckenridge police officers responded to a collision at the intersection of Main Street and Ski Hill Road, where a man driving a Jeep hit a man attempting to cross the street.
Emergency medical workers with the Red, White & Blue Fire Protection District provided care to the victim on scene and later transported him to St. Anthony Summit Medical Center in Frisco. He was conscious and talking on scene, according to police reports.
Officers spoke with the driver, who told them that he was heading home and had a green light at the intersection. He said he spotted two individuals running across the street but couldn’t stop in time. The officers decided not to administer a field sobriety test to assess whether the man was under the influence of drugs or alcohol and allowed him to leave the scene.
Breckenridge Police Chief Jim Baird said officers can administer tests only if they have cause to believe a person is intoxicated. He said officers will consider the totality of the incident to determine whether a driver is potentially unsafe to drive, including if there is a smell of alcohol coming from the person or car, if the driver is slurring their speech, or if they have glassed-over or bloodshot eyes, among other factors.
“When the police decide to do that, they have to have some kind of reasonable cause to put somebody through that,” Baird said. “In this case, that just did not exist — no smell of alcohol, no statements related to drinking. … We only would put somebody through field sobriety if we suspected they were drinking from other indications, and that did not occur.”
Officers then went to St. Anthony’s where they were able to interview the victim. He suffered numerous abrasions and a possible head injury, according to the report. He told police that he and a friend were crossing the street and looking for a ride home, and that he thought the crosswalk sign was showing it was OK for pedestrians to cross.
He said he observed the car approaching and hesitated but said he decided to cross because he believed the car had time to stop. He said he believed the driver was speeding at the time. Another witness to the crash interviewed at the scene also said they believed the driver was speeding, according to the report.
The victim’s friend told police they had a no-crossing sign at the intersection and that there was a green light for traffic, but the men looked both ways and did not see any vehicles coming. He said the Jeep “came out of nowhere” and that he waved to try to get the driver’s attention. He said he tried to pull the victim back when he was hit and that he feared his friend was dead until he began to talk, according to the report.
A video of the incident obtained by the Breckenridge Police Department shows that there was a no-walking signal for pedestrians and that the driver had a green light, according to the report.
According to the report, there was no probable cause to arrest or summons the driver for careless driving “as there was a prohibited pedestrian crossing sign for (the victim) and a green traffic light for (the driver) at the time of the incident.”
An investigation is ongoing. District Attorney Heidi McCollum said her office is aware of the incident and is reviewing video footage and reports of the collision.
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