Reporting Elizabeth Hur
By Elizabeth Hur
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Only Eyewitness News spoke to the father of a local college student who survived being hit by a chaotic driver who led police on a chase right through Temple’s campus.
Police shot and killed the suspect.
He led them on a wild chase, hitting a Temple student with his pick up and leaving the scene.
Police sources told Eyewitness News, the driver hit the student, put the truck in reverse and backed over the student a second time.
“A quick prayer to say the least,” Harry Eckerson said.
After a long day of worrying and praying, the Eckersons are now counting their blessings after their 21-year-old son, Peter Eckerson, suffered two broken legs but is now resting and recovering at Temple University Hospital.
Eckerson added, “Alert and hungry so that’s always a good sign for a 21-year-old.’
According to police, Eckerson fell victim to a hit and run driver just before 11am at the corner of Oxford and Broad Streets. His parents tell us, the Temple senior was on his way to class when he was caught in the commotion.
“He was walking down the street and kind of glanced over his shoulder when he heard some noise and the next instant, literally instant, he was knocked down by the truck,” Eckerson explained.
Police say the suspect was driving his blue pick up down Broad Street when he jumped the curb, hit Eckerson and several parked cars. A narcotics officer was driving by and tried to stop the man to no avail. The suspect took off leading police eventually to a vacant lot in the 1400 block of Lambert Street where police say the suspect threatened a female officer.
Lt Ray Evers said, “At that time, the male says to the female officer, ‘Step back or I’ll blow your head off,’ at that time the officer discharged several times.”
The man was pronounced dead at the scene. The investigation is continuing. Meanwhile, the Eckersons say they are just grateful their son is still alive.
Eckerson added, “We’re really pleased how well the Temple staff and all of the emergency responders were able to get him here and take care of him so well.”
Turns out, Peter is an aspiring police officer who wants to protect and help others. Eckersons say they’re thankful Peter is given the chance to continue to pursue that dream.
As of Thursday night, Peter was listed in fair condition and expected to be released some time over the weekend.