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Crossing at red light fatal to Westmoreland woman

by: Eric Norberg, At right is the S.U.V. which struck the pedestrian; the female victim is covered with a yellow tarp in the center southbound traffic lane (upper left) as police interrogations proceed in the predawn darkness on Friday, September 29th.

Morning commute traffic northbound and southbound on Southeast McLoughlin Boulevard was disrupted shortly after 6 a.m. Friday, September 29th, when a southbound vehicle struck a 29-year-old woman reportedly attempting to cross the highway at Southeast 17th Avenue, against the stoplight.

Late the same day police released the identification of the victim as Carlene Nanatte Jones, who lived just a block away from where she died--in the 5300 block of S.E. 18th Avenue.

The motorist who struck her was identified as 57-year-old Jerry Michael Connor of St. Helens, who immediately turned into the adjacent gas station and remained at the scene, cooperating with police; the conditions were dark, and the motorist was determined to be traveling with the green light, at or under the speed limit. The pedestrian was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics.

Southbound lanes of McLoughlin were blocked by emergency vehicles and marked off with yellow tape while the victim lay under a yellow tarp; the northbound lanes were closed as well, shortly afterward at around 6:20 am.

As the investigation proceeded, southbound McLoughlin traffic was routed east on Southeast Holgate Boulevard, and northbound traffic was detoured into Sellwood.

McLoughlin remained blocked well past the morning commute period, while crime scene investigators processed the scene.

The highway was reopened before noon. No citations were issued.