Photo: Brett St. John’s vehicle after the collision (Santa Rosa PD)
SANTA ROSA // Police are investigating a hit-and-run that left a Santa Rosa woman dead in the late afternoon hours of December 13th.
Just after 5:30 PM, officers were dispatched to the South Wright Road and Finley Avenue area after a report of a vehicle collision involving a pedestrian. There they found a woman lying in southbound lane of South Wright Road, unresponsive and having suffered significant injuries.
Multiple witnesses reported that she’d been struck by a vehicle, possibly a mini-van, that proceeded to flee the scene northbound on Highway 12.
The woman has been identified as 56-year-old Barbara Jones. She was, unfortunately, pronounced dead at the scene. Around 20 minutes later, the suspect himself called to report the incident and returned to the scene to speak with officers.
He has been identified as 28-year-old Brett St. John of Santa Rosa.
Subsequent investigation revealed that he’d been traveling northbound on South Wright Road when he’d struck Jones as she crossed the street via crosswalk. St. John claimed it had been too dark at the time to see and he hadn’t been able to stop in time. He was later interviewed at the Police Station and released, pending further investigation.
The investigation is ongoing as officers work to determine why St. John fled the scene without stopping, as well as ascertaining whether drugs or alcohol were involved.