On Thursday, Sept. 26, Missouri Southern radiology major Heather Doubledee was struck by a vehicle while crossing Duquesne Rd. on her way to a music appreciation class.
Just before 8 am, Doubledee parked her vehicle in the lot in front of the football field, crossed the street and was struck by a vehicle pulling off of campus.
After Doubledee rolled across the hood and slammed against the ground, the car flew off without stopping.
“I turned my back to the car, they hit me on the left side, flipped me up onto the car and somehow turned me around backwards. I then flipped over twice and landed on the ground,” said Doubledee.
Doubledee didn’t sustain any serious injuries. She is, however, wearing a neck brace due to severe whiplash and is sore from several deep muscle bruises. Emotionally, Doubledee admitted that every time she crosses the street she gets frightened.
The person driving the vehicle that hit Doubledee has yet to be identified. While several eyewitnesses gave accounts of the accident, none of them were able to get a license plate number on the vehicle.
Since the car was leaving campus when the accident occurred, Doubledee believed the cameras around campus would be able to determine the vehicle by reviewing footage. Due to a technical problem the cameras had been non-operational for a few days leading up to the event.
The Joplin Police Department is currently investigating the incident. Chief of the University Police Department Ken Kennedy didn’t have any comments on where the case was heading because it fell outside of their jurisdiction.
“While we handle incidents of this sort on campus, if the accident takes place on Duquesne or Newman it is no longer our case,” said Kennedy.
Doubledee hopes that the school and the Joplin Police Department will work to prevent this type of incident from happening in the future.
“Either don’t let the students park over there (across the street), put up operational cameras or have a sidewalk going up over the top of the street,” said Doubledee.
This is just one of many “road rage” incidents that have happened this school year, but Kennedy says it’s coincidence.
“This is just something that is going to happen. I don’t believe there is an underlying issue, but just that we have had an unusual number of accidents this week,” said Kennedy.