Yusef Kindle, 28, was charged with hit and run-injury on Thursday. If convicted, Kindle faces up to nine months in jail and fines up to $10,000.
According to the criminal complaint, Caledonia Police responded to a call of a hit and run crash that happened at 5:52 a.m. Feb. 24 in the 5100 block of Douglas Avenue. When officers arrived on scene, a woman told police she was in her van driving northbound on Douglas Avenue when a vehicle crashed into her van. The woman looked for the car, but didn’t see it.
The woman told police her right leg, back and neck were sore from the crash. The van also had severe damage to the rear bumper, rear tailgate and both rear quarter panels, according to complaint.
A witness, who was also headed northbound on Douglas Avenue but was three cars behind the suspect vehicle, told police that he saw a “a large puff of smoke ahead of him” and saw the van turn into a nearby shopping plaza. The witness, who took down the license plate on a gold Toyota Camry, started following it when he called 911.
An officer with the Caledonia Police Department called the owner of the Toyota, she told police she was selling the car to Kindle, that he had the title for the car and she no longer carried insurance on it. The woman also told police that he was paying for the car on a payment plan, but that he needed to own the car. Kindle then called the police asking if the driver was OK and told them he was the driver of the car that left the scene.
During an interview at the police station, Kindle told police he was driving to work when he noticed the van stopping in traffic trying to make a right turn into the McDonald’s parking lot and was unable to stop in time before he crashed his car into the van. The airbag went off in Kindle’s car. He told police he was “in shock and had trouble breathing” and thought about going to the hospital. Police noted that Kindle had a rash on his neck from the airbag.
When police asked if Kindle’s suspended license driving status had anything to do with him leaving the scene. “Maybe,” he said.