Police: Van Left Road, Hit Lawn Worker

By: Jared Cerullo Email
By: Jared Cerullo Email

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Monday, June 13, 2011

Wichita Police said a driver who struck and killed a lawn care worker left the roadway and hit the victim Friday. Police released new information on the case today.

The van driver hit the man near Central & Greenwich Friday, then kept driving, with the victim on top of the van, to a home in a neighborhood near 13th & 127th East.

Police said evidence at the scene suggests the maintenance worker was in the grass completely off the roadway. The driver's 22-year-old daughter was in the van at the time of the accident. Police initially said the passenger was 12-years-old.

Police said the victim is Mexican national. Investigators are trying to confirm his identity, according to Lt. Joe Schroeder.

Jail records indicate 67 year-old Mohamed Sarrafizadeh was booked into jail on charges of leaving the scene of a fatality accident. He was released from jail after posting 10% of a $2,500 bond.

Police said there will could be a criminal case against the driver, but because of the nature and complexity of the case, it may be four to five weeks before a case is presented to prosecutors. Any charges would be up to the discretion of the district attorney's office.

Asked whether there was any known explanation as to why the driver continued to drive home with the victim's body on top of his van, Schroeder had this reply:

"I still cannot comment on what his frame of mind was. It's still part of the investigative process. People do a lot of things that we don't understand... none of us. But I can't comment on that because I just don't know."

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