Local lawyer escapes injury in hit and run

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A prominent Pittsburgh attorney said she was shocked Monday evening when a driver struck her while she was walking in a Downtown crosswalk and then fled the scene.

Just as she has every working night for about 15 years, Victoria Lee, an attorney for Reed Smith, left the Downtown office where she works and walked to catch a bus back to her Point Breeze home. It was drizzling and she was carrying an umbrella.

Ms. Lee, 56, said she began crossing the street at the intersection of Smithfield Street and Sixth Avenue near the Burlington Coat Factory about 7:20 p.m. when the driver of a white Toyota Camry with gold trim tried to make a left turn from the wrong lane and struck her, pushing her to the ground.

"I was shocked," she said. "All I wanted to do was just get out of the street. It's not some isolated area. It's a place where you would expect pedestrians."

Ms. Lee said someone standing nearby called Pittsburgh police, who came to the scene and took a report. A copy of the police report was not available late Monday night, and officers in the Zone 2 station that covers Downtown said they did not yet have any information about the incident.

Ms. Lee said she declined to have a medic attend to her at the scene but later decided to go to the hospital to be checked.

She said she began shaking Monday night when she thought of the hit-and-run accident and how she hopes it never happens to her again.

She said she also thought of the woman who was struck and killed last week in the Strip District.

"I think it's an issue," she said of the hit-and-run collisions. "It seems to be something less uncommon than I thought."

Ms. Lee said she planned to cooperate with investigators and hopes anyone with information might also help police. Her letter to the editor about the incident is on page B-6 of today's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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