INDIANAPOLIS – An Indianapolis family escaped a fiery car crash on a city street and is now desperately looking for the driver who caused it.
At the intersection of Boulevard Place and 29th Street, tree branches remain charred from the flames of Veronica Blythe’s burning car after a wreck on Saturday. Shattered glass and singed car parts also sit along the road as she and her family are now just grateful to have walked away with cuts and bruises.
Video captured by a neighbor’s home camera shows the moment of the wreck.
“We didn’t have any time to react or do anything to prevent it,” Blythe said. “It just happened instantly.”
In the video, a black Jeep appears to drift into the far left lane where Blythe and her family were already driving. At that point, the two cars collide causing Blythe’s SUV to roll over and crash.
“I heard my boyfriend yell and then before we knew it, we were flipping and rolling, and then we were upside down,” she said. “Smoke just started pouring into the car.”
Inside the car with them, Blythe’s six-year-old daughter and four-month-old son. She and her boyfriend immediately tried to get the kids to safety.
“I remember he’s like, ‘Our babies, our babies,'” she described. “So, our first reaction was to try and open the doors. We couldn’t open any of the doors.”
The family escaped through the sunroof before flames engulfed most of the car. The driver who hit them was nowhere to be found.
“I mean, you would think you’d at least stop to at least help,” Blythe said.
Sadly, Blythe is not the only victim dealing with this issue. According to IMPD, there have been 4,813 hit-and-runs so far this year compared to 4,754 this time last year. The department also reports there have been 13 fatalities so far this year compared to 21 by the middle of October 2022.
“First of all, the law says you’re supposed to stop if you’re involved in a personal injury or property damage crash, particularly in crashes where there’s potential of people being injured,” said Lt. Shane Foley with IMPD. “We expect people to stop and provide assistance. Stop and call 911.”
There can be serious repercussions for drivers who flee from a crash.
“You could be charged with leaving the scene of a crash and ultimately you could face jail time,” Foley said.
Blythe and her family are recovering, but she said it is baffling that the driver of the black Jeep Cherokee that hit her did not stop.
“I don’t know how you can hit a car and see the roll and it’s clearly your fault and you just drive away without a care in the world,” she said.
Blythe and her family are offering a $750 reward for anyone who provides information that leads to the driver’s arrest.