LAKE OSWEGO, (LAKE OSWEGO REVIEW) — A woman was struck by a car Friday morning while attempting to cross State Street and A Avenue in Lake Oswego.
Police officers briefly closed State Street in both directions between A and B avenues while they investigated the scene and an emergency medical response team transported the woman to a local hospital.
The unidentified woman was headed westbound in a marked crosswalk at around 10:30 a.m. when she was struck by a vehicle turning left from A Avenue onto northbound State Street. Four sign-carrying protesters were standing on the sidewalk outside a nearby computer repair shop owned by Kevin “The Geek” Kerwin at the time, and LOPD Sgt. Clayton Simon told The Review that it appears the driver may have been distracted by the demonstrators.
“The pedestrian was lawfully proceeding in the crosswalk and the driver was looking at signs in the area of the demonstrators as she made the left turn,” Simon said. “The driver failed to see the pedestrian in the crosswalk in time to avoid her, and a low-speed collision occurred.”
Simon said both driver and pedestrian had the appropriate signal, but a posted sign in the intersection states that drivers are required to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk and the driver in this case, who remained on the scene and cooperated with police, failed to do so.
“The driver is likely to be issued a citation for that infraction,” he said.
Police were not able to interview the pedestrian before she was transported, but Simon said her injuries did not appear to be serious.
The sign-carrying protesters were standing on the east side of the intersection when the accident occurred, near the entrance to Kerwin’s computer repair shop. They denied that they were distracting traffic, but a woman who witnessed the accident disagreed.
“I think they were clearly distracting,” said Jennifer Moreno, who works nearby. “I get why they’re there (protesting), but it was clearly not a wise choice — this is one of the most dangerous intersections (in Lake Oswego).”
Simon told The Review that while there have been crashes at the intersection before, “it appears no more common than any other large intersection” in the city.
Kerwin, who is one of the organizers of a “March 4 Trump” event planned for March 4 in Lake Oswego, has a history of posting signs in his shop window that convey provocative messages with anti-liberal themes. His signs have received media attention in the past, and he has developed an online following.
Several anti-Trump groups have announced their intention on social media this week to stage counter-protests on March 4, but two of Friday’s protesters, Michelle Darr and Tera Parrish, told The Review that they intended to protest outside Kerwin’s store “until he shuts his business down.”
The women said they live in Portland and Hillsboro, and Darr said they had identified themselves to Kerwin as “anarchists.”
“We saw the (March 4 Trump) stories,” Darr said, “but what brought us out here were his racist Facebook posts.”
Parrish said she was a supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement and was troubled by Kerwin’s online posts, which she described as “racist” and “inflammatory,” citing his frequent use of racial epithets when referring to African Americans.