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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Brandeis student charged in hit and run that hospitalized two

Published: January 21, 2011
Section: Front Page

Waltham Police charged a Brandeis student on Dec. 8 with leaving the scene of an accident with injuries, negligent driving, failure to slow for pedestrians and speeding following a Dec. 3 incident that sent two female students to local hospitals.

A student driving on Loop Road struck and injured two female students on Dec. 3, 2010 before leaving the scene of the accident, Ed Callahan, director of public safety said last month.

University police officers found the individual’s car parked behind East Residence Quad from a description provided by student witnesses. The officers contacted the driver and spoke with him that evening, however, he was not immediately charged.

“Most of the time you don’t want to be hasty in these accidents,” Callahan said in an interview on Dec. 6, explaining that it is better to evaluate the facts and press charges once police officials and investigators know the details.

“The situation is being reviewed by the office of the Dean of Student Life from a student [and] safety perspective. Every situation involving any member of the Brandeis Community, that is investigated by my staff is dealt with in a sensitive and diplomatic manner,” Callahan wrote in a statement yesterday.

Jeremy Leiferman, senior director of Community Living, declined to comment yesterday on whether his department had taken any action or response regarding the student charged in the accident.

University police initially contacted the Waltham Police Department because of the personal injuries, Callahan wrote. The two departments originally conducted a joint investigation, but after the criminal charges were pressed against the student, Waltham Police took over the investigation.

AMR ambulances transported the two female students to Newton-Wellesley Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Callahan said. The student at Beth Israel spent several days there. On Monday Dec. 3, she was in good condition, according to Morag MacLachlan, a spokeswoman for the hospital.

She is no longer at Beth Israel, a hospital spokeswoman said on Thursday evening.

The student who went to Newton Wellesley suffered bruises and contusions and was released Dec. 3, according to Callahan.

Waltham Police Department Lt. Joseph Brooks declined to comment on the case because since it was a “pending criminal matter” it was an “exception [to the] public records law.”

A spokeswoman for Middlesex District Attorney Gerard Leone directed a request for the police report to the Waltham District Court clerk’s office. There was no report on file for the student charged in the case late Thursday afternoon. An assistant at the clerk’s office explained even if no report is on file, it is possible that a court date is being scheduled.

Callahan said that the two girls were walking in the street when the car struck them near the Life Sciences building. At the time, they were with between four and six friends and returning to campus after going out to dinner.

Prior to the incident, Public Safety had replaced several of the 15 m.p.h. speed limit signs missing on Loop Road, Callahan wrote. The department also bought a speed monitor that was used last semester outside the chapels, but it is currently not being used because of the winter weather. Later in the spring, the monitor and trailer will be used again.

“This device is an educational tool to advise Community members … [on dangers of speeding] and the need to be cognizant of pedestrian traffic,” Callahan wrote.