Duluth woman charged after seriously injuring pedestrian in hit-and-run

(Alex Laitala KBJR 6)
Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 9:09 AM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (KBJR) -DULUTH, MN -- A Duluth woman has been charged after seriously injuring another woman who was walking on the shoulder of Highway 23 in the Fond du Lac neighborhood.

The crash happened around 10:15 a.m. Wednesday, July 27 near W. 5th St. and Highway 23 in the Fond du Lac neighborhood.

According to court documents, Peggy Floding, 77, has now been charged with several felonies in connection to the crash, including: criminal vehicular operation, leaving the scene, and failure to notify police.

Shortly after the crash, Duluth Police say a person driving by the scene spotted Nancy Waters, 66, lying on the side of the road with what appeared to be serious injuries.

They called 911.

When police arrived, Waters was taken to the hospital, where it was determined she was suffering from life-threatening injuries, which included several major broken bones and internal bleeding.

As of Tuesday, hospital spokespeople say Waters is still listed in critical condition.

While investigating the scene of the crash, police noticed a vehicle’s red mirror box lying in the road.

A crash investigator with Duluth Police studied the scene, and determined Waters had been walking east on the shoulder of Hwy. 23, facing westbound traffic, at the time of the crash.

Police say just to the west of the crash scene, the road curves to the right for eastbound traffic, and the speed limit is 50 miles per hour.

Their investigation showed a vehicle driving east came around the curve, drifted across the westbound lanes, and into the shoulder where Waters was walking.

Police say Floding was driving that vehicle and would have struck Waters with the passenger side of her vehicle, breaking off her car’s mirror before going into the ditch.

According to court documents, the vehicle then drove out of the ditch and continued back onto Highway 23 where it crossed over both lanes of traffic and ended up in the opposite shoulder. Police say Floding then continued heading east.

While there were no witnesses of the crash itself, police determined the mirror box found on the scene was from a red Kia Sportage.

After referencing a list of those vehicles registered to Duluth area owners, police visited Floding’s home.

They observed a red Kia Sportage with a missing mirror and grass hanging off the bottom parked nearby.

While acknowledging she was driving in the area at the time of the crash, Floding denied knowing she hit a person.

Instead, she said she was driving along and a black pickup truck “zoomed” past her on the right shoulder.

Floding told police this scared her, caused her to spin around in circles. She said her vehicle went into the ditch on the opposite lane and then she drove out of the ditch.

However, after reconstructing the crash scene, investigators say they believe Floding’s vehicle did not spin out or spin in circles. There were also no brake or skid marks at the scene, according to police.

Police found surveillance video from a nearby business showing Floding’s vehicle driving in the area at the time of the crash. The video did not show a black pickup truck.

Floding is not currently in custody, as she has been summoned to court.

She’s expected to make her first court appearance Friday.

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