Conflicting reports muddle hit-and-run investigation
- Garth Guibord
- Sandy Post - News
Kimberli Lyons of Boring says a man tried to steal her truck
It appears there are still more questions than answers regarding the Aug. 1 apparent hit-and-run that sent schoolteacher Kimberli Lyons, of Boring, to the hospital.
Almost two months after the incident, investigators are trying to sort through conflicting reports from Lyons and several witnesses.
Lyons says she was hit when an unidentified male tried to steal her truck; some witnesses say it was a different truck that hit her.
The Clackamas County Sheriff's Office originally reported that Lyons was speaking to the driver of a Dodge truck in the parking lot of the Shell station at the intersection of Highway 212 and Highway 26, when the driver suddenly put the truck in reverse and hit Lyons at a high rate of speed.
Despite spending two days in the intensive care unit at Oregon Health and Science University Hospital, Lyons said the events of that day are crystal clear in her mind.
She remembers leaving her home in Boring at approximately noon to return recyclables at the transfer station in East Sandy.
When she saw that the center was closed, she turned around to go home. On the way she discovered that the tarp on her truck bed was loose.
She pulled into the Shell station at Ashley's Swiss Village to fix the problem. Suddenly, a man appeared in the front seat of her truck.
'I said, 'what are you doing?'' Lyons recalled, 'and he didn't say one word to me. He started the engine and gunned it in reverse. The door hit me very hard and knocked me down. He stole the truck. Obviously he doesn't care if he hurts someone.'
Witnesses reportedly described the vehicle involved in the incident as a dark blue Dodge 4x4 pickup, between model years 2000 and 2002 with an extended cab, two doors, a long bed, a dark blue canopy and a roof rack.
Lyons contends that her Ford F-250 was the vehicle involved.
'Three other witnesses are saying it was something else,' said Sheriff's Office spokesman Jim Strovink. 'You've got different witnesses involved, and that always complicates things.'
Investigators located Lyons' vehicle in the early morning hours of Aug. 2 on private property east of the Boring Fire Department, on Highway 212, just a short distance from the crime scene.
Earlier in the investigation, Strovink told the Sandy Post that one witness, who once worked at a Dodge dealership, gave a 'definitive' description of the suspect vehicle and identified it as a Dodge. But Lyons disagrees.
'As far as what the people who were there said, I don't understand,' Lyons said. 'It was really clean and simple. He got in my truck and took it, simple as that.'
While investigators do not have any new leads on the case, they are not discounting neither what the witnesses nor Lyons told them.
'We are not eliminating either possibility,' said Sheriff's Det. Debbie Calhoun. "(But) if you follow the evidence, it will follow the victim's story."
Lyons provided law enforcement with a description of the suspect who she said stole her truck. He is described as a man with short hair; short bangs that followed his hairline; a very tan, lean, angular face; hair that was almost same color as his face; bright blue eyes and high cheekbones. Lyons also noted that he was wearing a green-plaid shirt with a collar.
Still in recovery, Lyons said this is the first fall in 16 years that she has not been in a classroom teaching. While she hopes she'll be back in action in less time than the six months - what doctors initially predicted - she knows that her students are in good hands.
'I have a wonderful substitute for a while, and she's taken over well,' Lyons said. 'They've written me letters, and I've written them a weekly update. I'll go in and do activities with them before I go back and teach.'
Clackamas County police are asking anyone with information about the incident to call 503-723-4949.