Aspen woman seriously hurt in hit and run
A longtime local woman was seriously injured walking across Main Street on Friday night when a car hit her and kept going, police said Monday.
Alicia Smith, 45, was conscious after the incident and told police the car appeared to speed up and strike her, while a witness reported seeing no brake lights from the car and no attempt to stop, said Aspen police Sgt. Terry Leitch.
“They know they hit a human being and they left,” Leitch said. “This is serious. Someone was almost killed.”
Smith was first taken to Aspen Valley Hospital and appeared OK until a CT scan revealed issues with an injury to the back of her head, said Jason Fishburn, Smith’s boyfriend.
“(The doctor) said we’ve got to get her down to Denver right away,” Fishburn said.
Smith was then flown to St. Anthony’s Hospital in Denver, where she underwent emergency brain surgery Saturday morning. As of Monday, she remained in the intensive care unit at the hospital, and while she was talking and awake, she’d experienced multiple seizures, Fishburn said.
“She’s not out of the woods yet,” he said. “But we think she’ll come through this OK.”
The incident occurred at about 7:45 p.m., when Smith was crossing Main Street at Spring Street on the way to meet Fishburn at the Eagle’s Club, said Leitch and Fishburn. The car that hit her was heading west around Original Curve from the direction of City Market, struck her in the middle of the intersection and continued driving west on Main Street, Leitch said.
A witness helped Smith, who was knocked out of her shoes, from the middle of the road and to a bench on the north side of the street, he said. Smith was initially conscious afterward and told police she heard the car coming around the curve and tried to hurry across the street but felt she heard it speed up, Leitch said.
Smith and at least two witnesses were not able to provide a solid description of the vehicle, he said. The only thing police had to go on was a dark-colored — possibly maroon — sedan, Leitch said. One witness reported seeing a Colorado license plate number, but police tracked it down and discovered it wasn’t correct, he said.
“This is something bad for our town,” Leitch said. “You see it all the time in Denver but not here.”
The car likely sustained some front-end damage, which prompted police to check local parking lots during the weekend, Leitch said. Officers also checked cameras at businesses along Main Street, but hadn’t had any luck so far Monday identifying the vehicle, he said.
Fishburn said that besides the head injury, Smith is severely bruised on her right leg and arm but suffered no broken bones. She has lived in Aspen for the past 21 or 22 years and most recently worked at the Hotel Gant, he said.
“I really hope that someone from the community saw something and can come forward,” Fishburn said.
Anyone with anything to report about the incident can call the Aspen Police Department at 970-920-5400.
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