Driver charged with striking man in Pittsburgh's Highland Park neighborhood

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A Butler County man was arrested Tuesday evening after police said he struck a man standing on the sidewalk in front of his Highland Park home and drove away, leaving him with serious injuries.

Mark McCloskey, 26, of Valencia, is charged with an accident causing death or personal injury, a felony. He also faces a misdemeanor count of an accident involving damage and a summary offense, reckless driving.

Sgt. Daniel Connolly said the victim, David C. Wood, had dismounted from his bike and was unlocking the gate in front of his home, located in the 1400 block of North Euclid Avenue, when Mr. McCloskey's car, a Dodge Stratus, jumped the curb and struck him with the right side of his vehicle. According to a criminal complaint, witnesses told police he then struck a stop sign and kept driving.

Police found Mr. Wood lying on the sidewalk with lacerations to his head. He was taken to UPMC Presbyterian, where he was treated for a fractured vertebrae in his neck that required surgery and cuts on his head that required stitches. He was in fair condition, according to UPMC spokeswoman Gloria Kreps.

A short time after Mr. Wood was injured, a car matching the description witnesses gave crashed at Butler and Chislett streets at 7:25 p.m. The witnesses were taken to the scene of the crash and confirmed to police that it was the same car that struck Mr. Wood.

Mr. McCloskey was taken for a drug evaluation but police do not believe he was under the influence. He remained in the Allegheny County Jail on Wednesday with his bail set at $25,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Sept. 11 at 12:30 p.m.

Mr. Wood is a professor emeritus of neuroscience at the University of Pittsburgh. He retired in 2007 after working there for 38 years, but continued to teach classes part time.

education - neigh_city - Transportation - neigh_north

Moriah Balingit: mbalingit@post-gazette.com.


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