- The Washington Times - Monday, February 19, 2007

D.C. police are investigating whether a 21-year-old Southeast woman who was killed Saturday night by a Metrobus stepped into its path.

Metro officials said in a recorded statement of the incident that a female pedestrian, whom police identified as Angel C. Walters, “stepped from a car parked on the side of the road, carrying packages, into the middle of the block and stepped into the path of the bus.”

The incident occurred just after 11 p.m. as Metrobus No. 3941 was traveling north in the 1300 block of Congress Street Southeast. There were no passengers on board.

“The female pedestrian was hit by the bus, and later pronounced dead at the hospital,” Joanne Ferreira, a spokeswoman for Metro, said in the tape-recorded message.

Yesterday, Metro spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein said she understood that Miss Walters had stepped from a car, walked behind it and gathered several shopping bags before stepping into the narrow street where cars were parked on both sides.

“The police are still investigating and will determine how it happened,” Miss Farbstein said.

As of yesterday, no charges had been filed against the bus driver, who has not been identified.

The driver, who has worked for Metro since 2005, has been placed on leave until the investigation is complete.

Authorities also are investigating whether Miss Walters, a mother and a nursing student, had slipped on the ice and into the path of the bus.

Ice and snow had been cleared from the middle of Congress Street, but cars were parked on several inches of snow and ice.

Police had said that brake marks indicated that the bus was traveling 23 mph to 27 mph in a 25-mph zone.

The incident involving Miss Walters came three days after another Metrobus hit and killed two women on Valentine’s Day. That incident occurred about 6:40 p.m. at the intersection of Seventh Street and Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest. The bus driver was charged with negligent homicide.

Metro General Manager John B. Catoe Jr., who took office last month, has vowed to implement more safety measures, including ordering bus operators and supervisors to meet for at least one or two days annually to discuss and emphasize pedestrian safety.

The Metro board approved that plan and another to create a five-year safety program for Metro drivers and personnel.


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