RED BANK: TODDLER, GREAT-GRANDMOM HIT

rb accident 091114 2Emergency responders on the scene, above. Below, a State Police helicopter raises a cloud of dust at Count Basie Field while taking off for Neptune with one of the victims onboard. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

[This article was updated at 8:45 a.m. Friday to include the names and relationship of the victims and the driver, as well as the woman’s condition.]

rb accident 091114 1An 85-year-old Red Bank woman was in critical condition after she and her four-year-old great-grandchild were struck by a vehicle while crossing Newman Springs Road Thursday night.

The child, Cashmir Lahsir Hicks, was not seriously injured in the accident, which occurred when the pair jaywalked across the busy four-lane roadway after making a purchase at the Burger King near Shrewsbury Avenue shortly before 8 p.m., said police Chief Darren McConnell.

The woman, Ruth Bell Berry, remained in critical condition Friday morning.

McConnell said the pair was returning from the Burger King on the Tinton Falls side of the road when they were hit by the minivan, a delivery vehicle for a Staten Island bakery. The driver, 66-year-old Louis Vesce of Staten Island, was not charged, McConnell said.

McConnell said the child suffered a non-serious head-injury, while Bell suffered a serious head injury. She was airlifted by State Police helicopter to the trauma center at Jersey Shore Medical Center in Neptune, while the boy was taken there by ambulance. He was later released.

The accident occurred in the westbound curbside lane of the roadway, in front of Bell’s home, just east of Leighton Avenue. There are no crosswalks in the immediate vicinity.

Patrolwoman Heather Pubylski of the traffic unit is investigating.