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Pedestrian Fatality

Woman, 57, fatally struck by hit-and-run SUV driver is third pedestrian killed near one-mile stretch of Congress in Garfield Park in three months

This fatality took place one day after an off-duty police officer struck and killed a female pedestrian in River North.

4:09 PM CST on December 12, 2023

The crash location at 4238 W. Congress Parkway, next to 290, the Eisenhower Expressway, looking east. Image: Google Docs

Tragically, last Friday, one day after an off-duty police officer struck and killed a female pedestrian in River North, a hit-and-run SUV driver fatally struck a woman on foot in East Garfield Park.

Also tragic: This was the third pedestrian fatality on or near a one-mile stretch of Congress Parkway in three months.

According to the initial police report, on Friday, December 8, around 9:35 p.m., the victim, 57-year-old woman, was in the roadway of the 4200 block of West Congress Parkway (500 S.), just north of I-290, the Eisenhower Expressway. This location is four blocks west of an off-ramp for the highway at Independence Boulevard (3800 W.), which may encourage high driver speeds on Congress.

The driver of a red SUV, possibly a 2011-to-current model Dodge Durango with a sunroof, struck the woman and did not stop to provide aid.

She was transported to Mt. Sinai where she was pronounced dead. According to the Cook County medical examiner's office, the victim's name has not been released, pending notification of kin.

Police News Affair told Streetsblog this afternoon no one was in custody.

Image of the collision from the crash report.

The traffic crash report provides more details on what reportedly happened. "[Responding officers observed red vehicle debris on the roadway, personal belonging and a shopping cart that was damaged and was off the sidewalk on a grassy area," the report states. There were no Police Observation Device cameras at the location, and the officers were unable to recover footage from any household security cameras.

The crash report says a witness told officers she was driving in front of the SUV, heading west from Pulaski Road (4000 W.) on Congress, when she noticed the SUV driver was speeding towards her. She pulled over to the side of the road, presumably to avoid a crash, and saw the SUV driver strike the victim and flee north on Kildare Avenue (4300 W.) The witness said she was unable to identify the driver because of tinted windows.

Three people have been killed on or near Congress near the Eisenhower. Image: John Greenfield via Google Maps

Notably, this is the third fatal pedestrian crash on or near Congress near I-290 in the last three months.

On September 9, a hit-and-run sedan driver struck and killed a male pedestrian, 56, on the 500 block of South Independence Boulevard in Garfield Park, just south of Congress.

And on October 4, a turning truck driver fatally struck Chauncie J. Lewis as he lay on the sidewalk at the northeast corner of Congress Parkway and Kostner Avenue in West Garfield Park.

The frequency of traffic fatalities on this corridor suggests that there's an urgent need for safety initiatives, such as traffic calming, bollards to keep turning drivers off sidewalks, and/or speed cameras.

Streetsblog Chicago Fatality Tracker

Pedestrian: 28

Bicyclist: 5

2023 Chicago pedestrian fatality cases

Note: Streetsblog Chicago’s traffic death numbers represent fatal crashes on Chicago surface streets, based on media reports and/or preliminary Chicago Police Department data.

2023 Chicago bike fatalities

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