Local News

Hit-and-run victim prays for driver that injured him

Posted December 28, 2009 3:59 p.m. EST
Updated December 28, 2009 6:29 p.m. EST

— A Raleigh man seriously injured in a Sunday morning hit-and-run said Monday he is praying for the driver who hit him.

Jimmy Lee Brown, 49, was driving about 65 mph on eastbound Interstate 40 near Harrison Avenue shortly after midnight Sunday when a silver Lexus going more than 90 mph crashed into the back of his Geo Prizm, the state Highway Patrol said.

"I remember hearing this vehicle coming up behind me very fast," Brown said Monday from his bed in the intensive care unit at WakeMed in Raleigh.

He said he looked up to see the car's headlights in his rear-view mirror and had one thought.

"I remember saying, 'Oh my God,'" he said.

The impact sent Brown's car spinning more than 500 feet into a guard rail and left him with a fractured neck. He was listed in good condition Monday.

The Lexus was abandoned nearby, but the driver fled the scene before state troopers arrived. Troopers said they believe someone came to pick up the driver.

Troopers are using the registration information from the Lexus to track down the driver, and they said charges are pending in the case.

Brown said he feels lucky he wasn't paralyzed and looks forward to a full recovery.

"It was totally irresponsible, but there again, my father taught me you have to pray for people like that," he said.

Eugene Brown said his prayers are focused on his son's health.

"I'm just praying he can get back to what he loves best, and that is music," Eugene Brown said.

Jimmy Brown is a music producer and said he must be content to listen to the soft hum of machines in his hospital room until he can get back into his studio.

"Even when I don't have an instrument with me, (music is) going through my mind," he said.