Updated 08/07/2012 05:20 PM
Surviving victim of fatal Charlotte pedestrian crash testifies
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CHARLOTTE — Jurors heard emotional and graphic details Tuesday about a fatal accident two years ago caused by what prosecutors call a distracted driver.
Defendant Leah Walton admitted to police she took her eyes off of the road to reach for her cigarettes. Now Walton is on trial for killing one pedestrian and seriously injuring another in the crash on Craig Avenue in August 2010.
Jurors heard from several witnesses Tuesday, but the one that could have the most lasting impression is crash survivor Lisa McIe.
McIe doesn't remember getting hit, only waking up five months later in the hospital. She had several head injuries, broken bones including her pelvis, right hand, knee and ankle. She has had more than 17 surgeries in the two years since the accident.
“[It was] indescribable, crushing, stabbing. I couldn't believe it, I was still alive and feeling this,” said victim Lisa McIe.
McIe later learned her best friend and coworker, Susan Karabulut, died in the accident. Jurors also heard from one woman who heard the accident and tried to help the victims, and another woman who saw it happen while walking her dog.
“I saw bodies go under the car and the bodies kept going around and around. The car kept coming straight at me; [I was] frozen on the sidewalk saying stop,” said witness Kristin Talbot.
Talbot told jurors how she yelled to Walton to help, but she remained by her car in a state of shock.
The defense says Walton admits she was distracted and has taken responsibility for her actions from the beginning. Walton is charged with involuntary manslaughter and reckless driving. Last summer Walton passed on a plea deal which would have required her to spend two years in prison.
Testimony resumes Wednesday morning.