'Call an ambulance!' said driver who fatally hit woman near Lake Calhoun

  • Article by: PAUL WALSH , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 14, 2014 - 2:36 PM

A woman who was hit by a truck while crossing the street with a green light has died of her injuries.

A woman who was struck and dragged by a commercial truck while in a crosswalk near Lake Calhoun has died, authorities said Friday.

Caitlan C. Barton, 25, of Savage, was run over by the box truck Wednesday evening as she crossed the street with a green light. She was hospitalized at Hennepin County Medical Center and died from her injuries Thursday, police said.

Barton was waiting at a red light at Market Plaza and W. Lake Street shortly after 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, and when the light turned green she began crossing the street. A commercial truck heading south on Market Plaza was making a right turn onto W. Lake Street and the side of the truck struck Barton, said police spokesman John Elder.

The truck driver apparently did not see Barton, who was dragged about a quarter of a block, Elder said.

Allison Barton wrote in a Facebook posting that her sister was walking home from the gym when she was hit and suffered serious head injuries.

“My other half, my best friend, my beautiful sister Cait, has graced heaven with her presence,” Allison Barton wrote. “It’s been a difficult day, and I know that the days to follow will not be any easier.

“We are seeking comfort in knowing that she is watching over us as we struggle to say our goodbyes. Her life wasn’t as long as she deserved it to be.”

Gamboa Hernandez, with his bicycle, was waiting at the same light as Caitlan Barton and saw everything.

“I looked at her, and she look at me, and all of a sudden I didn’t see what happened, but I heard her screaming, ‘ahhhhhh!’ ” Hernandez said. “The truck was over her,” he continued. “The driver got out and said, ‘Are you OK? Are you OK? Someone, call an ambulance!’ ”

Hernandez said that he and Barton had waited for the light to turn green and the walk signal to illuminate in their favor before proceeding. Barton, who worked at Target headquarters downtown, was just a stride or two ahead of him, he said.

“I was almost killed, too,” said Hernandez, who turns 62 years old on Saturday. “I almost didn’t celebrate my birthday.”

Barton received immediate medical attention because there is a fire station at the intersection and an ambulance was at the station. Also, a police squad car was within a block of the crash.

The driver, working as a courier, was described by authorities as distraught and cooperating with police. It does not appear that drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash, Elder said.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

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