Hit and Run Involves Pregnant Woman

, Posted: Thu, May 2 2013 at 6:43 PM, Updated: Thu, May 2 2013 at 6:49 PM

A second hit and run in Grants Pass in two weeks. This most recent incident sending a pregnant woman to the hospital.

Hit and run ... again.

"Baby's fine," Aunt of the victim Audra Waite tells us.

On Wednesday about 4:30 in the afternoon, Audra Waite tells us her pregnant niece, Christina Van Tassell was hit in the Grants Pass Bank of America parking lot when a truck simply didn't stop.

"She has bruising on her hand and soreness on her upper shoulder and then she got hit on the lower half of her back because he kept going," says Waite.

Police tell us the suspect left the scene, but was caught at the GG's Thrift Store and Antiques across the street. Catching owner Michelle Martin by surprise, "He backed in trying to hide, and the police came."

It's the second hit and run in two weeks. The other at Ninth and Riverside involving a five year old sent to the hospital with multiple injuries including a fractured skull.

"I really felt for the mother when I saw that," says Martin.

Both women say it's no surprise these types of crimes are happening, especially after wednesday's hit and run suspect - 82 year old Alfred Carl Sparks - was caught, cited and released on felony hit and run charges.

"I think because there is all this going on and they're not locking them up, they're telling their friends that they are going to do anything," says Martin.

Police say they're hands are tied. "Currently the jails not lodging for those type of crimes, so unfortunately we're stuck with citing and release even on some of those felony charges," says Lt. Jim Hamilton of Grants Pass Public Safety.

"Cops can't do nothing, there's no where for them to be," says Waite.Both lamenting the dangerous changes that are happening in Grants Pass.

Police are still looking for the suspect in the previous hit and run. We're told they were driving what looked like a matte black GMC Jimmy and may or may not be in the Grants Pass area.

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