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Neighbors Say Wheaton Spot Where Hit and Run Happened is Notorious For Speeders; Police Now Looking for Toyota Corolla

7:28 AM, Mar 1, 2013   |    comments
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WHEATON, Md. (WUSA9) -- Police are releasing more information in the hit and run crash that killed a Wheaton woman Tuesday night. They say they are sharpening their focus on a late 1990s to early 2000s model Toyota Corolla.

Neighbors tell WUSA 9 they are concerned about safety at the intersection where the hit and run occurred. They say cars routinely speed past them as they try and legally cross Connecticut Avenue.

Lily Aguirre of Wheaton crosses the intersection regularly. She says, "It's kind of scary, lots of cars running, zooming."

Neighbor Merlina Paladis adds, "It's dark here."

Paladis and Aguirre are just two of several people who came up to us to tell us drivers speed on this stretch of Connecticut Avenue. The speed limit is 45 mph. We got out the WUSA9 speed gun. We clocked drivers between 7 and 7:30 at night: the same time as Tuesday's hit and run. We witnessed most drivers obeying the law, driving between 29 and 45 mph. However, we did see one driver clock in at 48 mph, and another driver at 49 mph.

We also witnessed that the intersection is poorly lit at night. Police haven't blamed low light nor speed for the crash that killed Eres Ali. But neighbors say they wonder if the current speed limit could be the issue. Less than 4 miles away in Kensington, the limit along the same stretch of road is 35 mph.

Another potential factor in the increasing danger of crossing the road is the placement of the L8 bus stop. It stop at the unmarked intersection rather than at the nearby traffic light.

Police are now sharpening their focus for the driver. They say they're looking for a late 90s to early 2000s Toyota Corolla with front end damage, perhaps a broken headlight on the passenger side.

Police also haven't commented on whether the rainy weather on Tuesday night could have played a role in the crash. They are asking if you have any information that could help them break this case, to give them a call at 240-773-6620.

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