"I Didn't Even Know I Hit Someone,' Says 62-Year-Old Accused Of Hit And Run

Police found broken off parts of Joyce Smith's blue car at the scene.

By Eric Shorey

A Pennsylvania woman who is accused of striking a person with her vehicle now claims that she thought she had hit a pole.

Joyce E. Smith says she kept going after her vehicle slammed into something because she was unaware she had caused harm to another person, according to charging documents. The 62-year-old's vehicle had collided with a victim who remains unnamed in reports on December 21 at around 10:20 pm, just outside of Harrisburg. Smith now faces a felony charge of accidents involving death or personal injury and lesser charges including failure to stop and give aid and failure to notify police of an accident.

Lieutenant Tom Stauffer said officers were called to the scene after an 18-year-old was struck while crossing the street.

“It’s pretty normal to see people trying to cross the road,” Stauffer told Penn Live.

The victim was hospitalized after suffering a head injury and trauma to one of her legs and her back.

Police found broken off parts of Smith's blue car at the scene, including a parts of a passenger side mirror. They were able to determine the make of Smith's car, a 2004 or 2005 Chevrolet Aveo, from the pieces. A car matching the description was located nearby and showed matching damage.

“The mirror was matched with what was recovered from the accident from the accident scene to the mirror housing unit on the front passenger door. The mirror was missing on the Chevrolet and the recovered mirror also matched the mirror housing unit on the Chevrolet," an officer wrote in the criminal complaint, according to Fox 43, a York, Pennsylvania-based news organization.

The vehicle was then towed by police.

“I didn’t even know I hit someone," Smith told officers at the time. She was then advised to speak with an attorney before making any further comments on the incident.

Smith was arraigned on her charges on January 7. Her bail was set at $10,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for February 25.

[Photo: Swatara Township Police Department]

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