Fort Worth

Fort Worth Police Working to End Surge in Hit-and-Run Crashes

Police are working to put a stop to the recent surge in hit-and-run crashes in Tarrant County. The growing number of victims over the past month includes children as young as 5 and 7 years old.

Fort Worth police are now planning a campaign in schools in the Fort Worth Independent School District to talk to kids about playing safely away from the road.

They're also looking to add public service announcement billboards around the East Loop 820 and U.S. Highway 287 corridor, and they're putting in more safety measures like stop signs in areas where they hear concerns.

A new set of stop signs on Barron Lane in East Fort Worth came too late for a 7-year-old girl taken too soon.

"She gets a kiss every morning and every night," said Peggy Lewis, pointing to a photo of her granddaughter, Aja Hill.

Aja is still a part of daily life at grandma's house.

"She's really missed," Lewis said.

Life is harder without her, harder still every time the family hears of another hit-and-run and another family shattered.

"I just don't understand what a person is thinking when they hit a person's body," Lewis said. "They can hear it. I heard it in the garage. You have to stop."

The most recent victim killed is 36-year-old Josh Poindexter, a combat veteran described as a good, honest and hardworking man. He leaves behind a 10-year-old son.

Investigators with the Tarrant County Sheriff's Office said he was hit and killed by a car Sunday morning after falling off his motor scooter near Eagle Mountain Lake. Once again, the driver didn't stop.

To Aja's family, it's like being victimized twice: losing a loved one with no one held accountable.

"I accept that Aja's gone," Lewis said. "But I just don't accept the way that she was killed."

Aja was riding her scooter, just outside her grandparents' house when she was hit. Police have questioned a driver caught on surveillance video speeding away from the scene. But one month later, they've still made no arrests.

The same thing happened on Friday, when 5-year-old Caroline Muckleroy was injured on her scooter in another hit-and-run in Northeast Fort Worth. She survived, and police are searching for a white or silver 2009 Toyota 4Runner seen hitting her in surveillance video.

They're also looking for a way to make this stop.

"We want to try to address that in the elementary schools, because these are the children that are being hit, that age range," said Capt. Shawn Stone, with the Fort Worth Police Traffic Division.

They're educating children but also asking adults to keep your eyes on the road, always stop to help, and remember what's at stake.

"What about your children? Think about that," said Lewis.

Fort Worth police did make an arrest last week in one of the high-profile hit-and-runs. Matthew Hunter Wyman, 18, was arrested at Crowley High School, accused of hitting 16-year-old Aaron Lancaster. Lancaster, a student at Timber Creek High School, is still hospitalized.

Police are following leads and asking for the public's help to solve the rest of these cases.

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