Conewago Twp. woman accused of hitting man with car
A Conewago Township woman is accused of striking a man with her car in East Manchester Township last month, according to police.
Northeastern Regional Police say Patricia Jean Kostelec-Zimmerman struck the man on Aug. 24 then left the scene.
Kostelec-Zimmerman, 55, told police she had a seizure or "jerked the steering wheel," according to officials.
Kostelec-Zimmerman, of the 400 block of Conewago Creek Road, is charged with accidents involving death or personal injury, aggravated assault by vehicle, recklessly endangering another person and driving with a suspended license.
Crash: According to police, the victim was walking back to his truck in the 600 block of Zions View Road about 4:15 p.m. Aug. 24 when he was struck by Kostelec-Zimmerman's 1999 Oldsmobile Intrigue.
Witnesses told police they saw the vehicle heading west on Zions View Road when the car veered right and struck the victim, charging documents indicate.
Police found multiple pieces of debris on the roadway, including some that appeared to be part of a passenger side mirror, officials said. While authorities were investigating, a man called 911 and reported a suspicious vehicle — later identified as Kostelec-Zimmerman's — in the 400 block of Conewago Creek Road, court documents state.
Investigation: Police found the vehicle, which had heavy passenger side damage and a smudge on it, and officers used a piece of debris and matched it with the car, court documents state.
Police tried to contact Kostelec-Zimmerman in person and over the phone but were unsuccessful. Later that night, police obtained a search warrant and had the vehicle seized, according to authorities.
On Aug. 28, police searched the car and found Kostelec-Zimmerman's wallet and flip-flops, officials said.
Police said during that four-day period Kostelec-Zimmerman made no effort to contact police about the incident or her vehicle, and attempts to reach her were unsuccessful.
On Aug. 29, officers showed up at her residence and found her lying face-down in a fetal position on the floor and not responding, and police say she told them she was fine and she had just had a seizure.
Kostelec-Zimmerman let police and EMS into the home to make sure she was OK, court documents state. She told police she was getting a lawyer, according to officials.
Spoke to police: Kostelec-Zimmerman spoke to police and said that she had gone to Giant and was on her way back to her home when she had a "seizure or jerked the steering wheel," police said.
"She stated that after the accident she just wanted to make it to her residence," Officer Corey Sheaffer wrote in charging documents.
Kostelec-Zimmerman told police that she felt "funny" while on her way to Ace Hardware, where she went before going to Giant, court documents state.
Police say she told authorities that she didn't remember much from the crash and said she started flinching before the crash.
Kostelec-Zimmerman believed that she blacked out when she struck the man, police said.
When asked why she didn't respond to police earlier, she said she was scared, according to police.
Kostelec-Zimmerman told police her license was suspended for medical reasons. She said she drove to the store because she needed to get food, according to police.
The victim suffered multiple injuries, which included abrasions and a concussion, court documents state.
Charges were filed Wednesday, Sept. 12, and Kostelec-Zimmerman was arraigned on them that day. She remains free after posting $15,000 bail.
A number for her could not be found, and she does not have an attorney listed yet.
Her preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 11 at District Judge Robert Eckenrode's office.
— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @YDDornblaser.