Surveillance Footage Found in Jason Swanson's Hit-and-Run Death, Say Police
Hollywood Police have been trying to track down the suspect who struck and killed 31-year-old Jason Swanson on Sunday before driving off. Thus far, they've had little to go on. And while they say that they've gotten a bit of a break in the case, it's still not much to go on, and they're still asking for the public's help.
"Only a better description of the suspect's vehicle," Hollywood PD spokesperson Jamie Hernandez tells New Times.
Images of the suspect's vehicle driving off after the accident have appeared on surveillance footage shot at the scene. Police say the video shows the female suspect and a kid passenger, fleeing the scene at South 56th Avenue, just north of Washington Street in a dark-colored late 1990s to early 2000 Ford Explorer or Ford Sport Trac. The Ford has damage to the lower passenger side and floor boards. Pieces of the Ford had been sprawled around the area after the woman struck Swanson in a collision Sunday night.
When police arrived on the scene, they found Swanson on the ground, on fire. They attempted to extinguish the flames as paramedics rushed to the area. But Swanson was pronounced dead on the scene.
One witness told WSVN that there was a loud explosion, and two sets of fire ablaze on the street.
One of the fires was Swanson's bike. The other was Swanson himself. The witness says Swanson was on his back with his arms up in the air, as the fire engulfed him.
According to a Hollywood Police report, Swanson was thrown from his bike after the collision and the Ford came to a halt. Witnesses say the woman stepped out her vehicle and walked over to Swanson before getting back into the Ford and taking off without helping him. Witnesses also said that a child between the ages of 8 and 12 was riding in the passenger side of the SUV.
Swanson's family, meanwhile, are demanding justice.
"It was painful to come out here last night and see this and try to figure out, not know what happened and not be there with him in his last minutes," said Swanson's father, Greg Swanson, via WSVN.
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Swanson's sister, Alicia, expressed outrage and anger over the woman driving off and not rendering aid.
"I mean, how can you do that in front of your kid?" said told Local 10 in Miami. "Hit somebody and just keep going like nothing. Not knowing if the kid's dead, or hurt, or on fire or whatever. Just freak out and leave and think it's all OK. It's not OK."
The family has kept a vigil at the scene where Swanson was killed, with hand-written notes, stuffed animals and flowers linking a fence nearby.
Hollywood Police are asking anyone with information to call Traffic Sergeant Paul Scheel at 954-967-4577.
A $3,000 reward is being offered by Broward Crime Stoppers for information that leads to the hit-and-run suspect. Broward Crime Stoppers can be contacted at 954-493-TIPS.
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