Hit-and-run takes Denver police several hours to respond

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DENVER — Even after explaining it, it’s hard to comprehend.

“It was out of a movie, literally,” said Juanita Rucker who lives near the site of the crash. “Who drives down a street and sees a car sitting on top of another car? That’s just bizarre.”

Around 2:30 p.m. Monday, a black Lexus turned onto South Drayton Way off Iliff Avenue and somehow crashed into two cars, flipping one on its side.

One of those cars belonged to Troy Wingler.

“I was in my apartment and my roommate let me know that my car had been involved in an accident and came out to see that it has clearly been totaled,” Wingler said.

Frustration from a getting crashed into is one thing. But at the time of this interview Monday night, police still hadn’t showed up.

“Its eight-o-clock at night and this happened at three-o-clock and the police still aren’t here,” Wingler said.

A security guard at the scene said the delays were because of jurisdiction confusion.

“The crash investigator shows up and he starts taking pictures and tries gathering as much information as he can and he pulls up on his computer, woah, this is actually Arapahoe County according to my map, I can’t actually deal with this,” said the security guard.

Shortly after, Arapahoe County showed saying it was actually Denver’s jurisdiction.

After nearly eight hours had passed by, Denver police responded to clear the road to take down the report.

In a statement, Denver police admitted to the back and forth between Arapahoe County and said, in part:

“It looks like the initial call was around 2:38 p.m. It was believed that the crash occurred in the neighboring jurisdiction. That call was sent to them to respond. It ultimately came back to our dispatch center around 5:23 p.m. Our calls are prioritized by severity which may explain in part why it took a while for our officers to respond. No injuries were reported which would have lowered the priority. I do not have the information on what calls were active at that time, but Officers were not able to respond to take a report on this crash until roughly around 9:30 when an officer was able to respond to take the report.”

Still, the long response time doesn’t make it any better for those who stood by for hours waiting.

“Obviously nobody got hurt but there’s a car on the side of the road that’s on the side of itself, I just figured that would be somewhat important, with all the people driving by it is not safe,” Wingler said.

As for the driver who hit both cars and left the scene, Denver police said their investigation is ongoing.