Crime Watch 8

Girl killed in hit-and-run; neighbors say road is dangerous

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A 12-year-old child was killed in a hit-and-run on the city’s east side Friday morning.

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department says a child is in serious condition after a driver hit her while she was walking to her bus stop and then took off.

Julie Beach, an Indianapolis resident, said, “It’s pretty nerve-wracking. There’s a lot of traffic.”

Police say the hit-and-run happened just before 7 a.m. Officers were called to North Mitthoeffer Road and Penrith Drive on a report of a pedestrian struck. Neighbors say the road is dangerous. Police found a girl possibly they said was between ages 10-13.

“No child deserves to be struck. No child deserves to be left in the middle of the road with no medical aid rendered to her,” said Officer Samone Burris from IMPD public affairs division.

She was rushed to Riley Hospital for Children and later died. The girl was later identified by the Marion County Coroner’s Office as Saleina Marcelus.

Jeff Beach, an Indianapolis resident, said, “A lot of cars are going by way too fast and aren’t caring about others. They’re swerving in and out of traffic. They’re exceeding the speed limit.”

Julie Beach said, “It’s so crowded and it’s so hard to judge when to cross and everything with the speed of the cars, the traffic, it’s so much harder, and I’ve seen people blow through the stop signs.”

Residents of the area say they are aware of the dangers and were not happy when they heard the child was hit. “For kids who live in the neighborhood, I know parents try to tell them to stay away from the street, wait till the buses stop before you get on the bus,” Julie said.

Police say Marcelus attended Andrew J. Brown Academy. School officials went to the hospital to check in on the girl’s condition, but at this time, they aren’t able to provide any more information.

Police were looking for information and hope someone saw something. They say the driver was in a red vehicle with possible damage to the front and sides.

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office released a statement about its Safe Surrender program:

“We operate the civilian-administered Safe Surrender program where people that have warrants or have committed a crime can turn themselves in at the time and place of their choosing with loved ones or faith leaders present. This might be the thing that nudges someone into doing the right thing.”

The sheriff’s office says drivers can call 317-327-7233 to begin the process.

Update issued Friday night by IMPD

“On 8-27-2021 at approximately 6:45am near N Mitthoefer Rd and Penrith Dr, a 13 yr old female was struck by a red 4 door vehicle last seen going north on N Mitthoefer Rd. After investigators examined the parts collected at the scene preliminary information suggests the suspect vehicle is a 2016-2018 red Honda Civic. 

“If any one has information related to this incident they are encouraged to call crime stopper or the Crash investigation officer at 317-327-6549.

“Case number IP210088166.”

Statement from IMPD issued shortly before 10 p.m. Aug. 27, 2021

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