A man responsible for a string of hit-and-run incidents that left one dead and several more injured was arrested on Wednesday morning.
40-year-old Kareem Welton allegedly stole a gray Nissan Altima and crossed into an oncoming lane of traffic to intentionally hit a 38-year-old man who was out running in Collegeville, PA. The man was airlifted to a local hospital and is expected to survive despite multiple critical injuries. This includes fractured ribs, a broken leg and a broken spine.
After hitting the runner, Welton parked the stolen car at a gas station. He later attempted to steal a bike but was confronted by the owner and later arrested. “This defendant was not only driving recklessly and at a high rate of speed, but he intentionally targeted the runner and hit him, attempting to kill him,” said Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele.
According to officials, Welton’s hit-and-run rampage began just after midnight on Wednesday morning. He allegedly hopped into a a Chevy Malibu that was left running, according to Fox 29. It is believed that the vehicle belonged to an acquaintance of Welton’s.
After stealing the car, officials say Welton rear-ended a couple who were sitting on a motorcycle near Broad and Lombard streets in Philadelphia. They were not seriously injured.
The suspect then continued onto South 15th Street where police say he drove onto the sidewalk and struck a 31-year-old Andrina Moreno-Sanchez, who was walking home from her job with a co-worker. Welton is then reported to have turned around and hit her again, all of which was captured on CCTV footage that police have not released. Welton allegedly tried to attempt a third pass but was stopped by witnesses. Moreno-Sanchez was taken to Jefferson Hospital where she died shortly before 5 a.m., according to police.
The driver then ditched the car used in the murder and did another hit-and-run, this time in Manayunk. Welton allegedly struck another pedestrian on Umbria and Hermitage streets. The victim was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries, according to police.
Then, shortly before 6 AM, a Collegeville police officer received a call regarding a a stolen gray Nissan Altima heading west on Ridge Pike and Main Street. He then spotted a vehicle matching the description and activated his lights in an attempt to stop it. Seconds later, the officer came across a pedestrian laying in the middle of the road, allegedly struck by the vehicle. The 38-year-old victim was airlifted to a local hospital.
Early investigations have alleged that Welton intentionally entered an oncoming lane of traffic in order to hit the runner. The suspect was later taken into custody after stopping the vehicle at a gas station.
The suspect was taken into custody without incident. Bail has been set at $2 million.