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13-year-old cyclist hit in crosswalk by motorist

Craig MedredAlaska Dispatch

According to the Anchorage Police Department, at about 8:00 pm Tuesday night, 21-year-old Jordan Tuttle hit 13-year-old Mary Robicheaux with his 1997 Toyota Camry as she made her way across Northern Lights Boulevard.

Robicheaux was wearing a helmet and using the designated crosswalk at Nichols St. to cross the thoroughfare just west of East High School.

The flashing red lights above the crosswalk were designed specifically to alert drivers of a pedestrian in the crosswalk, yet police say Tuttle failed to obey them and stop. Eyewitnesses told APD that Tuttle slammed on his brakes, but too late, and hit Robicheaux.

Robicheaux is currently in critical condition at an Anchorage hospital, said a spokesperson. According to KTVA, Robicheaux suffered multiple broken bones in her legs as well as possible brain and spinal injuries. Anchorage police have not yet cited or charged Tuttle. There is no word on whether or not Tuttle was driving impaired or distracted, but police say they are investigating.

Incidents like this one have been unfortunately frequent in Alaska lately. In June, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported that a 10-year-old boy suffered a broken leg after being hit by a car that had run a red light. And earlier in August, the News-Miner reported that a commercial truck killed a 13-year-old boy who was riding a bike on the sidewalk along Badger Road in North Pole. Authorities stated that the deceased “entered the path of the vehicle as it was entering the parking lot of a local business.”