WHEELING, W.Va. — An Ohio woman has been identified as the victim of a fatal pedestrian accident in Wheeling on Thursday.
Wheeling Police said Michelle Lynn Czoka, 54 of Bridgeport, Ohio was struck by a truck in the Warwood area of the city and then dragged more than five miles by another vehicle.
Authorities said Thursday morning they were investigating a pedestrian fatality in the 100 block of Warwood Avenue on WV State Route 2 and quickly connected a second incident along Interstate-70.
Officers were dispatched for a report of a vehicle hitting a pedestrian just after 6:30 a.m., but when officers arrived, a victim could not be located, a release said.
Less than 30 minutes after officers arrived on the scene in Warwood, a second 911 call was made at the Interstate-70 Washington Avenue eastbound exit ramp for a vehicle that appeared to be dragging a body.
Wheeling Police Public Information Officer Philip Stahl told MetroNews that the second call came from a nearby vehicle.
“I’m not sure what they said but essentially they made a call saying that they witnessed a body underneath a vehicle being drug along the exit ramp,” he said. “They waved down the motorist and made them stop. When we arrived, we confirmed those details.”
Upon further investigation by Wheeling Police, investigators believe a woman was hit by a pickup truck in Warwood and then dragged by a second vehicle to the Washington Avenue area. Between those distances for a vehicle to travel is just over five miles long, including being on Interstate-70 and inside the Wheeling Tunnel.
Rain was coming down and fog was over the Wheeling area on Thursday morning but Stahl said an investigation is ongoing into if the weather was a factor in the pedestrian being hit.
“It’s dark in the morning and it was raining this morning,” he said. “There was a foggy mist going on this morning too but we haven’t made any determinations on what exactly happened.”
Authorities have located the drivers of both vehicles, Stahl said.
Czoka’s body has been sent to the West Virginia Medical Examiner’s Office to determine a cause of death.
The incident remains under investigation.
Pedestrian Fatality Under Investigation pic.twitter.com/yoOR05Ipb9
— Wheeling, WV Police (@WheelingPolice) November 7, 2019