Investigators announced Saturday that they believe a gray BMW 3 Series vehicle was involved in a near-fatal hit-and-run accident that left a woman in critical condition in Westport, Massachusetts.
The vehicle, authorities say, is likely a model from 1999 through 2005 and should have sustained minor damage to its hood, front end and/or front passenger side.
The Westport Police Department said they were alerted to the crash around 8:15 p.m. Tuesday evening.
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The victim, 30-year-old Stephanie Tripp, was located by first responders on Old Bedford Road lying facedown in the breakdown lane with serious injuries. The Fall River resident was taken to Rhode Island Hospital and remains in critical condition.
Authorities said the victim was walking on the roadside when she was hit. The driver was reportedly male. A witness told police he left the car and told the witness that he did not intend to hit the woman and was sorry.
The witness told the driver to stay and wait for police, but officials said the man drove off eastbound while the witness was helping the victim.
A different witness tried to follow the suspect, who was reportedly speeding and swerving past cars by going into the opposite lane of traffic, but eventually lost sight of the suspect's car around Faunce Corner Road in Dartmouth.
The vehicle was last seen at the corner of Old Fall River Road and Faunce Corner Road in Dartmouth around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday. It may have minor front end damage.
Tripp's aunt released a statement Friday saying the family was overwhelmed with grief but hopeful Tripp would make a full recovery.
"Anyone who knows her will tell you she is a fighter. My family is hopeful that the person responsible for this accident will come forward," read the statement. "This person must have panicked and fled and must be just as scared as we are. Please come forward. Our family is looking for answers and a sincere apology."
Police ask that anyone with information about the case contact Massachusetts State Police Trooper Phil Giardino at 508-993-1928 or Westport Police at 508-636-1122. Tips can also be submitted anonymously by texting the word “Bristol” to the phone number CRIMES (274637) or by submitting a web tip online.