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Police: Hit & run, chase end with car hitting building


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Wilmington Police say the single-car crash that ended when the vehicle hit a pole and a building on Wooster Street this morning started with a hit and run in a restaurant parking lot.

WPD spokeswoman Linda Rawley says Rachel Lea Harvell, 21, hit a white Honda Accord in the Chick-Fil-A parking lot on Oleander Drive around 6:45 a.m. Rawley says the owner of that car, Stuart Michael Lopes, 65, chased after Harvell, who left the scene. Police say speeds during the chase reached about 75 mph.

Investigators say Harvell, who was driving a grey Nissan Sentra, lost control in the intersection of 17th and Wooster streets, crashed into a pole, then into the side of the building at 730 S. 18th Street.

EMS took the Harvell to the hospital. Police say she had a minor concussion.

Police cited Lopes for careless and reckless driving, while police say Harvell could face charges after she gets out of the hospital pending their investigation.

Dispatchers say the crash blocked both lanes of Wooster before crews opened one of them for traffic. Traffic was backed-up for more than an hour in that area.

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