Police: 30-year-old Aurora teacher turns herself in after hit-and-run injures Denver teenager

Erin Jackson teaches at Aurora charter school

DENVER - Denver Police have arrested a 30-year-old woman in a hit-and-run crash that critically injured an East High School student on Wednesday.

Police identified the suspect as Erin Jackson. Police said they recovered the suspect’s vehicle, a Chevrolet Malibu, at East Colfax Avenue and Gaylord Street -- five blocks from where the 16-year-old student was struck.

Jackson turned herself in to police at 4:30 Thursday morning.

“She’s being held for investigation of leaving the scene of an accident causing serious bodily injury,” said Denver Police Detective Michael Bochert.

Jackson is a fifth grade teacher at an Aurora charter school, AXL Academy. She teaches science, English and social studies, according to her LinkedIn page.

Police wouldn’t say if Jackson was heading to work when she allegedly struck the teenager.

 

--AXL Releases Statement--

AXL Academy’s Head of School, Audra Philippon, released a statement Thursday night concerning the arrest of Jackson:

"We are shocked to learn of Erin’s involvement in this terrible accident.  We can confirm that Erin has been employed as an intermediate teacher at AXL for approximately 8 months.

We are keeping the victim in our thoughts and prayers and wish her a full recovery.  At this time, our top priority is supporting our students as they learn of this sad news."

The hit-and-run victim was walking north in the crosswalk at Colfax Avenue and Elizabeth Street Wednesday morning when a grey sedan ran a red light and hit her.

Police released security video showing the accident.

“After being struck by the car, the vehicle continued to flee eastbound,” Bochert said.

Lt. Robert Rock, of the Denver Police Department, said that video was widely seen and likely played a role in the suspect turning herself in.

“Who turns themselves in at 4:30 in the morning,” Rock said. “She must not have gotten much sleep.”

Rock added that the victim’s family is elated by the arrest.

“It was very troubling to them that somebody would be involved in this collision and then leave the scene,” Rock said. “So they’re very happy on one hand, but still, very traumatized on the other.”

Rock said family members told him the teenager is now stable, but still in critical condition.

“They said she may have a long recovery ahead,” he said.

Fellow students at East High School told 7NEWS they are grateful that an arrest has been made.

“I’m just happy that we got an arrest,” said Angel Trujillo, “because no one deserves to get hit like that.”

A friend of the victim told 7NEWS that she too is glad that the person allegedly responsible came forward.

She described the girl who was hit as a quiet, no drama friend.

“She’s the sweetest, nicest girl I know,” the friend said.

A witness provided police with a partial license plate number for the grey sedan and police recovered a piece of debris from the scene.

When asked if the debris matched damage to the car, Rock simply said, “We’re confident we have the car that was involved in the collision.”

Just minutes after the teenager was hit in the crosswalk, a second East High student was struck at Colfax and Fillmore Street.

Police said that victim stepped out into traffic and was hit.

The driver in that collision stopped.  Police said the second accident was not the driver’s fault.

Early Thursday, Denver police had marked and unmarked police cars on the streets near East High.

A 7NEWS crew spotted them pulling over drivers who were speeding or running red lights.

The officers also used their bullhorns to warn students and other pedestrians about jaywalking and crossing Colfax without the walk signal.

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