Calgary family makes plea to track down hit-and-run driver; police show vehicle of interest

Click to play video: 'Calgary family makes public plea to track down hit and run driver'
Calgary family makes public plea to track down hit and run driver
The family of a Calgary woman who was struck by a vehicle in January is thanking everyone who rushed to help her and appealed for help in the case. The family hopes sharing her story publicly will jog someone’s memory and provide a detail that could give police the break they need – Feb 1, 2023

Nearly two weeks after Zaineen Samji was struck by a vehicle in a hit-and-run crash, she’s had four surgeries to help correct the devastation done to her legs.

Her family is hoping police will get a tip or find enough evidence to take next steps.

Samji’s brother Altaf Jina said she was getting off the bus at around 7:30 a.m. on Jan. 19 near the corner of 52 Street and 61 Avenue S.E.

On the sidewalk, Samji, 43, waited for a crossing signal, he said.

“She’s telling me she saw the car, (made) eye contact, the guy was slowing down, so she started walking,” Jina told Global News. “Next thing you know, he sped up, hit her, and he had a trailer, so the trailer went over her legs.

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“When I saw the pictures, that’s when we actually realized what’s going on and how bad it is.”

A Good Samaritan stopped his vehicle, blocking the street to prevent any other vehicles from hitting Samji, and waited for emergency responders.

Click to play video: 'Calgary family desperate for answers after daughter killed in October hit-and-run'
Calgary family desperate for answers after daughter killed in October hit-and-run

Samji’s family is grateful for all of the health-care workers who helped, from EMS to doctors, nurses and surgeons.

“They have been wonderful to us. We met a lot of angels,” Samji’s brother said.

Jina said the four surgeries included inserting metal supports and preparation for skin grafts.

The family hopes Samji, who is in hospital in stable condition, will walk again.

“We really hope so. We’re really praying hard,” Jina said, in tears. “But she’s a fighter.”

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On Thursday, Calgary police released CCTV footage of a vehicle they believe may be connected to the hit and run.

Police are looking to speak to the driver of the truck seen in the video who was travelling past the Petro Canada gas station at 5333 61 Ave. SE shortly after the hit and run.

Truck seen in this CCTV video who was driving by the Petro Canada Gas Station located at 5333 61 Ave S.E., shortly after the hit and run on Jan. 19, 2023. Calgary Police

Police describe the vehicle as a dark-coloured half-tonne truck pulling a flatbed trailer.

Tips can be provided to the CPS non-emergency line at 403-266-1234, or anonymously to Crime Stoppers.

Jina hopes other Calgarians will step up to help.

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“Please do the right thing. Go to the police,” Jina said. “We need this guy to be caught.”

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