Police: Many unknowns in case of car running over its 87-year-ol - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Police: Many unknowns in case of car running over its 87-year-old driver


Emergency personnel were called to the post office in Palestine after a woman was killed by her own vehicle.

According to Palestine police, at about 10:12 a.m. Thursday, 87-year-old Sumiko Coleman drove into the post office parking lot, allowed her husband to exit the vehicle, and moments later exited the vehicle herself while the vehicle was still running.

"She stepped out the car and the car backed out the parking spot. We believe it struck her, causing her to fall and then she was subsequently run over by the vehicle," said Lieutenant Jeffrey Powell with Palestine Police.

The vehicle is a blue 2003 Cadillac STS four-door. 

In the early stages of this investigation, police say there are still a lot of unknowns.

"We haven't determined necessarily whether the door struck her and knocked her down or whether the door was closed and still continued to roll back over her," said Lieutenant Powell. 

Police say Sumiko's husband was in the post office at the time of the accident but police were able to speak with a witness.

"As she was leaving the premises, the witness saw the women fall from her review mirror. She then saw the vehicle appear to strike her and then subsequently it appeared the woman was run over by the car. The car was unmanned at the time that this happened," said Lieutenant Powell.

Palestine police say it was an unfortunate accident. 

There is still more to investigate.

"We may be checking out to make sure there wasn't anything mechanically wrong with the vehicle and that is was possibly an accident to put the vehicle all the way in park," said Lieutenant Powell.

Residents trying to get their mail Thursday morning witnessed the crime scene.

"There were police cars surrounding the post office parking lot not letting anyone in," said Camille Davis, who tried to get her mail. "They were mainly focused on a front row parking spot because that's where the body bag was and that's where they were scrubbing at. I'm assuming they were scrubbing up the blood."

Coleman was pronounced dead at the scene by Justice of the Peace Wesley. Wesley also ordered an autopsy. Palestine police said the body will be transported to Forensic Medical Management Services of Texas in Tyler.

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