A 29-year-old Milwaukee man has been cited for the hit-and-run accident that injured a Waukesha woman and killed her dog the evening of June 8.
Police pulled over a vehicle at the intersection of East Main Street and North East Avenue at 5 p.m. last night that matched the description of the vehicle involved in the hit-and-run
A subsequent investigation confirmed it to be the vehicle involved in the hit and run, according to police.
Carlos M. Ward was arrested and transported to the police department where he admitted his involvement in the hit and run of the woman but told police that he did not realize he had struck the dog, police said.
Ward was cited and released. He received citations for a hit-and-run accident -- causing injury, failure to yield right-of-way while making a left-hand turn and operating a motor vehicle without insurance.
A subsequent release from police clarified the charges in the case. Two of the citations Ward received were for municipal charges -- operating without insurance and failure to yield right of way.
The hit-and-run citation could result in a felony charge for Ward for which penalties vary depending on the severity of the injury to the woman. If convicted of a felony hit-and-run accident involving injury to a person who did not suffer great bodily harm, Ward faces a penalty up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment up to 9 months.
The case will be forwarded to the Waukesha County District Attorney's office for consideration of charges in the hit-and-run citation and to the Waukesha City Attorney's office for the two municipal traffic offenses, according to police.
Debbie Schultz, 54, of Waukesha suffered a broken foot in. The accident occurred as Schultz was walking across the intersection of Broadway and Barstow avenues.
The car came out of nowhere, Schultz said in an interview late Thursday afternoon.
“He just totally bashed into us,” she said.
Schultz said she felt helplessness, watching as her dog was hit. Lexi walked away immediately following and then just sort of “hunched over,” she said. Schultz couldn’t go to it because of her injuries. Emergency personnel attended to the dog but it died of its injuries.
“The minute I heard that sound I knew she was going to die,” Schultz said.
Schultz had received Lexi as a gift from her husband shortly before his death in a car accident in 2008. The dog had been a comfort for her as she grieved his sudden death.
However, after completing other training, Schultz and Lexi started service dog training this past winter. Lexi was particularly suited as a service dog because she was responsive and attentive to her owner.
“I was so proud of her. She was doing really well,” Schultz said.
That training may have prevented Schultz from being more injured than she was. Although the accident happened quickly, Schultz thinks Lexi moved to protect her owner before the impact.
“I really think she turned toward me to save me,” Schultz said.
Schultz was unable to be reached following the news of Ward’s arrest in the case.
Editor's note: this article has been updated to include information from the Waukesha Police Department regarding the citations issued and potential charges.