Police say cars were drag racing in Jamaica Plain
A woman was seriously injured last night after she was hit by a car that police said was drag racing down Hyde Park Avenue in Jamaica Plain and then fled the scene.
The 45-year-old woman, who was not identified, was taken to Brigham and Women’s Hospital with injuries that were serious but not life-threatening, according to police spokesman David Estrada.
Police arrested Kenneth Mauras, 17, a few blocks away in a red Honda that allegedly hit the woman, and police were searching for the other car involved in the race. That car was a green Honda Civic or Accord, Estrada said.
Mauras was charged with leaving the scene of an accident involving personal injury, driving to endanger, speeding, and drag racing, according to Estrada. He will be arraigned Monday in West Roxbury District Court.
The woman was alone and wearing tennis shoes, but carrying high-heels when she was struck in the crosswalk. It appeared that she was returning home from work, witnesses said.
Gaetan Gedeon, 18, said he saw two cars “flying” down the street, followed by a police car.
Estrada could not confirm last night whether police were chasing the motorists.
Later that evening, the scene was blocked off with police tape and clothes were strewn beside the crosswalk at Hyde Park Avenue and Eldridge Road. A long swath of Hyde Park Avenue was closed to traffic.
“She was in the crosswalk,” said Kelly Arana, 28, who lives on the street. Her 6-year-old-son, Emilio, had been looking out the window and alerted her to the woman lying on the street.
“I was looking out the window and then all I saw was a woman lying on the ground,” Emilio said.
The woman appeared to have severe injuries to her left leg, according to several people who said they saw her after the accident.
“Horrible. It was horrible,” said Jose Figueroa, 16.
Nicole Munez, 30, heard a loud boom and ran outside with her boyfriend to see what had happened. “We saw this lady lying in the street,” she said. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”
A week ago, she said, teenagers driving around after their prom crashed in front of her house and took down her fence.
Drag racing is not unusual on the street, where there is a long, curved stretch of open road without traffic lights, witnesses said. Police could not comment last night on the frequency of racing there. Figueroa said a 16-year-old friend of his was killed in a car accident on the street two years ago.
“Past the hours of 12, down from that light to that light,” Gedeon gestured at the stretch of roadway, “it’s just pure drag racing . . . you can catch two or three drag races a night.”
There is a crosswalk at Eldridge Street, but no light, so drivers routinely fail to stop for pedestrians, neighbors said.
“People race up and down the street like crazy . . . they use this street like a speedway,” said Dorothy White, 55, who lives in an apartment building on the street. “They need to put a light down here.”
On the street beside the police tape, Arana reminded her son to be careful. Her family moved here two months ago, and this was the third accident they had seen near or in the crosswalk.
“Even in a crosswalk, it doesn’t mean they’re going to stop,” she told Emilio.
Globe correspondent Sarah Gantz contributed to this report