Jogger killed in hit and run

JGFitzgerald -- January 6th, 2009

A jogger was struck and killed by a hit and run driver around 5:30 a.m. today, according to a preliminary report from the HPD. It happened in the 1100 block of S. Main St., between Port Road and the railroad tracks near JMU.

The victim’s identification is being withheld pending notification of next of kin, the report said. The victim has since been identified as Sherry Anderson, 55, of Harrisonburg. Anyone with information is asked to call 574-5050.

48 Responses to “Jogger killed in hit and run”

  1. seth says:

    don’t know the name, but apparently it was a psycholgist/psychiatrist (?) for the city schools who was running with the wellness center group.

  2. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    It has now been released by the HPD. The victim was 55-year old Sherry Anderson. I believe she used to work at Keister Elementary, but more recently worked at JMU.

  3. Awful.

    I’ve almost been hit while riding my bike on several occasions not too far from there (intersection of Port and Main) but I couldn’t imagine a hit-and-run like that. The chances someone could get away with a hit-and-run death seems slim. How could you hide the evidence indefinitely?

  4. Emmy says:

    How sad. I can’t imagine hitting someone with my car, but I really can’t imagine leaving them there to die alone.

    Praying for her family.

  5. David Miller says:

    just out
    Jan. 6, 2008

    The Harrisonburg Police Department continues to investigate a fatal hit and run accident involving a pedestrian.

    Police responded to the 1100 block of South Main Street around 5:30 a.m. for the report of a person who had been struck.

    Sherry Anderson, 55, of Harrisonburg was pronounced dead at the scene.

    It appears Ms. Anderson was jogging along the road when she was struck by a vehicle.

    This incident remains under investigation. Police encourage anyone with information about this accident to call Crime Solvers at 574-5050.

  6. David Miller says:

    Sorry Jeremy, didn’t see your update till it was to late

  7. Del says:

    That’s so very sad. I often see people jogging on the street on Main Street that time of day and sometimes worry for them, but, of course, the traffic is so light that time of the morning.

  8. john says:

    Ms. Anderson taught my son at Keister during a very difficult time for him and she was wonderful. She was devoted to the special children she worked with and never failed to ask about my son whenever I saw her in the years after he moved to another school. Harrisonburg was a better place because of her.

  9. Breslau says:

    I can barely take the thought of someone being killed during a normal activity like jogging and then someone being vile of heart enough to scurry away in their vehicle afterwards.

    I dearly hope the family recovers well. I also hope for justice in this incident.

  10. Renee says:

    OMG this is horrible. Praying for her family & friends… I hope whoever hit her feels guilty enough to turn themselves in – they took a human life.

  11. Renee says:

    They arrested 24-year-old Bethany Jones for the hit-and-run:

  12. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    Bethany Jones is a potentially common name. This Bethany Jones [link removed] is the right age and is a bartender at [name of bar removed]. Can anyone confirm whether she is the same one?

  13. Del says:

    I know where you’re coming from Jeremy, but I don’t think we should post people’s pictures in connection with this if we don’t know for sure. That might not be her.

  14. Brooke says:

    Jeremy, you know I love ya, but that is NOT cool. Maybe that’s her, but if it’s not, you’ve just linked her face and identity to this crime.

  15. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    Let me repeat and make it more clear. Bethany Jones is a potentially common name. For example, there is an older woman named Bethany Jones who is associated with JMU and who is not the same person as the accused. I do not know if the person linked to that Facebook profile is the same Bethany Jones accused in this crime. I would like for anyone who does know for sure (one way or the other) to say so.

  16. I removed the link.

    If anyone knows who she is, leave a comment or contact us privately (see link at top left).

  17. Here’s the mugshot the HPD just released. It certainly appears to match the link Jeremy posted.

  18. Brooke says:

    Jeremy, I get what you’re saying, BUT you could have just said, “I know a Bethany Jones that works around town. I wonder if it’s her? Anyone know which Bethany Jones it is?”

    To me that’s a different from posting the link to someone’s Facebook account who has the same name, because even if you’re giving the caveat that it might not be her, and that it’s a common name, you’ve still linked her face, and her personal info to rather public speculation as to whether she’s the guilty party.

    If it’s *not* her, I could see her being VERY pissed about it. I know I would be.

    Thank you for taking it down, Brent.

  19. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    If another Jeremy Aldrich around my age was arrested, I would want it to be known very quickly that it wasn’t me. The link was embedded in a sentence that said, “*This Bethany Jones* is the right age and is a bartender at The Pub. Can anyone confirm whether she is the same one?” If I had said, “I know of a Bethany Jones in Harrisonburg and I wonder if it’s her,” without providing any more information, I don’t know how anyone could have told me whether it was the same person.

  20. Brooke says:

    Because if they knew which Bethany Jones it was, for sure, they could say, “It’s the Bethany Jones that works at the Pub” instead of throwing up a name and picture of someone it MIGHT be, but very well may NOT be.

    I see your point about wanting people to know it wasn’t you, Jeremy. I think everyone would. But unless someone does know who it was for sure, that’s not going to get cleared up.

    I’m not saying you accused that girl of the crime, but you certainly linked her likeness and identity to speculation whether it’s her.

  21. Brooke says:

    Well, judging by the mugshot, I’d say it is her. Either that, or she has a doppleganger with the same name and the same age, which is rather unlikely.

    I guess I’m just looking at it from the standpoint, of I wouldn’t want someone posting my Facebook profile if someone with a similar name was accused of a crime, even if they admitted it might not be me.

  22. Take a look at the mugshot. I’m 99.99 percent sure Jeremy was right.

    I’ve confirmed with a mutual friend (of mine and Bethany’s) on Facebook that the mugshot matches the profile that Jeremy posted.

  23. Brooke says:

    (read my last post, Brent :-)

  24. NewHburger says:

    I agree with the crowd that thinks it was premature and therefore inappropriate to post a link to this girl’s Facebook profile.

    This is a perfect example of why my Facebook profile can only be accessed by approved friends.

  25. Emmy says:

    I agree NewHburger. I’m also going to say that I find the picture in today’s paper highly distasteful. If I had just lost my loved one, I would be more than disturbed to see an article of their clothing on the front page of the paper.

  26. Josh says:

    Emmy: I agree. I found the shoe distasteful. I thought the photo of police on the scene was appropriate.

  27. JGFitzgerald says:

    DNR reporting the accused had a prior drunk driving conviction.

  28. Renee says:

    Emmy, I agree with you, too.

  29. Bubby says:

    I just wish someone would post a smiling picture of Sherry Anderson. I think I met her.

  30. Emmy says:

    I heard someone else say they wish they would have used a nice picture of her, because the focus will be on the person who hit her from now on.

  31. Renee says:

    Bubby, I agree – I have been following the news and still don’t know what she looked like. If I come across one, I’ll post it here.

  32. Del says:

    Yes, Renee, I’ve been looking for a picture of her, too, so please post if you find one.

  33. Breslau says:

    I really want to know how and where the police found this woman.

  34. Del says:

    And as far as the posting of the facebook picture, this goes to the question of the blogosphere and internet changing news reporting. I guess it would be no different than Jeremy asking friends, “Do you think it’s the bartender from the Pub?” but it does sort of seem different.

    On the other hand, obviously information is moving much more quickly than in the past and perhaps the local traditional media outlets now have a responsibility to get on top of a story like this faster than what is happening–especially when unfiltered information is being spread via the comments section of their own website.

  35. The Valley Progressive says:

    Sherry was a long time friend of mine and a involved in the care of my daughter. My family’s thoughts and prayers are with her family. The police have released the fact that Bethany Jones was a bartender at “The Pub” and that she had been drinking heavily into the wee hours of Tuesday morning after her shift. She admits to hitting “something”, didn’t think it was a person, and has a history of DUI as recent as 2007.

  36. Del says:

    Very bad news for the Pub…..

  37. Emmy says:

    I have a friend that works at the Pub. This must explain her “I’m going to be sick” Facebook status the other day.

  38. The Valley Progressive says:

    Is “The Pub” that place off of Neff (Deyerle?) that used to be called “THe Alston Pub?”

  39. Del says:

    Yes, that’s it VP.

  40. Del says:

    I’m not sure how much has been reported, but they were already having some ABC issues before this.

  41. The Valley Progressive says:

    I’ve heard, and this just might be hearsay, that Alston’s Pub is a rough, local bar. Is that true or just hype?
    Comment from Del
    Time: January 7, 2009, 6:08 pm

    Very bad news for the Pub…..

    I’m sure you meant this in a respectful way, but it comes off as weird considering what Sherry’s family is going through right now.

  42. Del says:

    I’m sorry. Yes, this is certainly tragic for her family and my heart goes out to everyone involved.

    “Rough, local bar” isn’t a completely innacurate description from what I understand, though I haven’t set foot in the place for the better part of a decade. Based on what was reported this evening on channel 3, one can only imagine the worst and if true, their ABC license is justifiably in danger.

    There are at least a few innocent people in the community who are directly or indirectly financially dependent on that business and I guess I was thinking of them when I commented.

    Once again, I apologize.

  43. Ray says:

    While it doesn’t absolve the driver of her role in this tragedy I wonder if the jogger was running in the road as opposed to on the sidewalk. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen people jogging in the street when the sidewalk is completely clear. And not just during early morning hours either. I’ve seen it during peak traffic times which put both the jogger and motorists in peril. That’s why sidewalks are there, for pedestrians to use. The streets are for vehicles.

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