Neighbors Question If Chatham Car Crash Could Have Been Avoided

CHICAGO (CBS) – An 11-year-old girl is now in critical condition on Wednesday after being hit by a SUV and pinned against a porch in Chatham the night before.

The question on the minds of people in the Chatham neighborhood is could the accident been avoided if there were more stops signs or even a traffic light, CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot reports.

11-year-old Keeshuna Patterson was walking Tuesday night to a neighborhood snack shop, at 80th and Vincennes, when she was hit by an SUV. Patterson faced head trauma and was unable to breath on her own.

The driver of the Nissan Pathfinder hit two cars, then tried fleeing the scene, heading southbound, police said. The vehicle then hopped the curb, hitting Patterson and plowing into a porch.

“Cars go through there like 50, 60 miles an hour,” said Estameo Black, Patterson’s grandfather. “It’s crazy.”

The intersection where the incident took place in West Chatham is a two way stop. Patterson’s grandfather said he has wanted to see four stop signs at 80th and Vincennes for years now.

Felicia Sylvertooth has been the president of the 80th and Harvard Block Club for the past 14 years. She said for the past six years, she has been asking for a stop light to be put at this busy intersection.

“We have a school here, Westscott,” Sylvertooth said. “I felt for our kids, it’s safer to cross. It’s not even safe for the crossing guards to get across. No one wants to stop.”

In response to those concerns, a spokesperson for 17th Ward Ald. David Moore said this is an unfortunate accident.

Requests for stop signs and traffic lights may have been made before Moore took office, and added that there are several traffic lights along Vincennes which act as deterrents in the area, the spokesperson said.

Charges are still pending against the driver of the SUV, according to police.

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