Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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3 bicyclists survive hit & run crash on Nicholson

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BATON ROUGE - Three bicyclists survived a hit and run crash in Baton Rouge Monday night, but Louisiana State Police are still looking for the driver of a red Nissan Frontier pickup truck.

The crash happened shortly before 9 p.m. On Nicholson near Innovation Park Drive as the bicyclists rode in single-file attempting to turn left.

One of the victims, Mika Torkkola, says he stood in front of the truck so the driver couldn't flee, but the truck took off anyway. His two friends Matthew Bartol and Justin Weber were still in the street. Weber was bleeding from his head.

"It was by far the scariest thing I've seen in my life," said Torkkola. "I didn't think he was dead, but I thought he was on his way."

Torkkola called 911 and then used his biking jersey to bandage Weber's head wound. He then held his friend's hand.

"About that time he kind of regained consciousness a little bit, so he was not quite speaking but trying to speak," said Torkkola. "I was just very glad to know that Justin was still there."

With all three crash victims escaping death they're now changing gears toward getting the driver to realize the wide-spread harm he's caused through Baton Rouge.

"I hope that he realizes how much damage and hurt he's done, not only to the three of us, but our family and friends, the bicycling community in general and anyone who ever rides a bike in Baton Rouge who hears about this and who's going to be less likely to ride a bike," said Torkkola. "I hope he does the right thing and turns himself in."

The red Nissan Frontier pickup truck likely has front end damage, according to State Police.


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