NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

November 15, 2012

NH man charged with hit-and-run

Port jogger injured in hit-and-run

By Dave Rogers Staff Writer
Newburyport Daily News

---- — NEWBURYPORT — A New Hampshire man is expected to be charged today with striking 23-year-old Elyssa Davis of Newburyport with his car and then fleeing the scene.

Newburyport police Inspector Michael Sugrue said Oliver Sheridan, 41, of Raymond, N.H., will be summonsed on one charge of leaving the scene of an accident with personal injury. Once the paperwork is filed at Newburyport District Court, it will be up to a clerk magistrate to determine whether there is enough probable cause to arraign Sheridan, according to Sugrue.

On Tuesday, Sept. 25, Davis, a naturalist at the Joppa Flats Audubon Center, was jogging along Route 113 around 5:45 p.m. when she crossed the entrance to Interstate 95 north and was struck by Sheridan, according to police.

Looking for oncoming cars before crossing the entryway, Davis waved at the driver to let him know she was crossing. But instead of slowing down and stopping, the driver sped up. The force of the collision spun Davis around and hurled her to the other side of the entrance. Instead of stopping to see if she was all right, the motorist fled down the ramp and blended into the highway traffic.

Three other motorists stopped to help the 5-foot-3-inch, 140-pound Davis, who was waving for help with one hand while holding on to her flopping right leg with the other.

The collision shattered both bones in Davis’ lower right leg. Following the arrival of EMT’s and firefighters, Davis was transported to Anna Jaques Hospital in Newburyport, where X-rays were taken. Due to the serious nature of the breaks, she was then transferred to Beth Israel-Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, where she underwent surgery. Doctors there inserted a titanium rod in her leg that will stabilize the bones over the course of several months.

Sheridan’s attorney, John Frazier of Andover, did not return a phone call in time for this edition.

Davis’ mother, Susan Levine, said she was very thankful for the police department’s perseverance that led to the charge against Sheridan.

“We’re gratified for their work and their continued attention and are pleased they’ve identified the driver. I’d like him (Sheridan) to realize the danger he put my daughter in and may have put other people in with this sort of reckless driving. He ought to step forward and apologize and make amends for what he did,” Levine said.

Levine added her daughter is off crutches and returned to work at Mass Audubon in late October.

In a previous interview, Davis said the accident that sent her to the hospital with two badly broken bones and resulted in the insertion of a permanent titanium rod could have happened to anyone jogging, running or merely walking.

“Please be careful and don’t assume that people will stop,” Davis said, addressing fellow pedestrians.