Reward offered for information on hit and run driver

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, April 29, 2014

A Pearl River County woman is offering a reward for information leading to the identification of a vehicle that ran her off of Interstate 59 and fled the scene.

According to an accident report filed at the Picayune Police Department, the incident occurred Friday at about 4:30 p.m. as three vehicles were northbound on the Interstate.

The driver who was forced off the road, Juanita Bennett, said she was traveling along I-59 in the left lane when she saw a white dually pickup riding her rear bumper. According to witness statements recorded in the accident report, the driver of a car traveling in the right hand lane a short distance behind Bennett and the dually also saw the dually following Bennett’s vehicle very close.

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Bennett said she tried to call 911, but as dispatchers answered the phone the driver of the dually passed her in the right lane before using his driver’s side rear wheel well to brush against her vehicle, causing her vehicle to spin out of control. Witness statements from the vehicle behind the accident state it appeared the driver of the dually intentionally hit Bennett’s car.

Bennett said she tried to regain control, but the vehicle slid of the right side of the Interstate before flipping twice.

Witness statements in the report described Bennett’s vehicle cross in front of theirs before leaving the road and rolling over twice.

The driver of the white dually pickup left the scene, while the witness stopped to check on Bennett, who had her 14-month-old child with her.

Bennett said after the car rolled it hit a patch of mud and water, spraying mud all over the inside of the car.

“We were both covered in mud,” Bennett said. “We looked like crawfish.”

Before the man hit her car she remembered seeing him flip her off, Bennett said.

“He was definitely mad about something,” Bennett said.

Fortunately Bennett and her child survived the incident, but the man responsible has not been identified at press time. Bennett said she is personally offering a $500 reward for information that would identify the driver. She said his vehicle would have damage to the driver’s side rear wheel well and estimates the white dually pickup to be a 1990’s model.

“We’re just trying to get this fool off the road,” Bennett said.

Bennett said her car was totaled.