Motor Vehicle Fatality On South 1st Street (Press Release)

by Public Information Officer, Wednesday, April 09, 2014, 13:26 (1503 days ago)

ABILENE, TX – Today, Wednesday, April 9, 2014, at about 7:36 a.m., officers of the Abilene Police Department’s (APD) Patrol and Traffic Division’s responded to a call of a major motor vehicle collision that originated in the 3000 block of South 1st Street. Initial calls to APD Dispatch from concerned citizens reported a collision between a vehicle and a pedestrian near South 1st and Sammons Street. The calling parties reported that the involved vehicle had traveled across the street and into a building on North 1st Street and that the pedestrian on South 1st Street had apparent injuries. Emergency medical personnel were dispatched to both scenes.

The ongoing traffic investigation has revealed the following: The pedestrian was walking eastbound adjacent to the street, crossing a driveway at a business in the 3000 block of South 1st Street. The vehicle, a 2001 Chevy Blazer, had pulled over and stopped at the business location. The Chevy was occupied by the sole occupant and driver, Redalpho Berma, age 54 of Tye. The vehicle then accelerated from a stopped position and began traveling forward and struck the pedestrian while exiting the driveway. The Chevy’s right front end collided with the pedestrian, pushing the pedestrian to the ground. The Chevy continued traveling forward and over the pedestrian with at least one of its wheels. The pedestrian sustained serious injuries and was transported to Hendrick Medical Center (HMC) where she succumbed to her injuries and died. The pedestrian was identified as Barbara Anne Hackett, age 76 of Abilene.

The Chevy continued traveling in a north easterly direction across South 1st Street, across the embankment on both sides of the railroad tracks separating South 1st from North 1st Street, continuing in the same general direction, and then crossed North 1st Street before crashing into the exterior of a building in the 3100 block of North 1st Street. While crossing from South to North 1st Street, the Chevy averted striking trees and made contact with the two rail tracks. The vehicle came to a stop after embedding itself inside this business. The business was unoccupied and closed at the time of the collision. Mr. Berma was located by first responders seated in the driver’s seat. He was conscious and was removed from the vehicle through the vehicles back window. Mr. Berma was transported to HMC for treatment. The building sustained major damage to its exterior and interior; damage estimates pending. The rail tracks were deemed undamaged by a Union Pacific representative at the scene.

There were witnesses to this incident. At this point in the investigation, alcohol is not believed to have been a contributing factor. The preliminary investigation revealed that Mr. Berma experienced a serious medical condition that led to the events described in this release. Mr. Berma is still hospitalized at HMC and his status is critical. This crash is under investigation by the Abilene Police Department’s Traffic Division under case # 14-6498. More information may be released as the investigation allows.

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