According to a public information release from Sgt. Wayne Delk of the Cobb County Police Department, the department’s Selective Traffic Enforcement Program (S.T.E.P. Unit) is investigating a pedestrian fatality on Austell Road near Austell Circle that took place yesterday, Monday October 2.
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Investigators report that an as yet unidentified pedestrian was crossing Austell Road at about 8:46 p.m. A 43-year-old Atlanta man was driving a BMW northbound in the left lane when he struck the pedestrian.
[The Courier withholds names of survivors in traffic incidents until investigations are complete]
Police report that the pedestrian was crossing in an unlit portion of roadway, and not in a marked crosswalk.
However, the Courier visited the site and later checked distances, and the nearest crosswalk to the intersection is about a quarter mile away at Cunningham Road.
Also, the stretch of Austell Road where the accident took place is identified on a county heat map as dangerous in the recently released Cobb Comprehensive Safety Action Plan.
The pedestrian was taken to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital where he died of his injuries.
The unidentified pedestrian was described by investigators as a Hispanic male, possibly 35-40 years old.
The STEP Unit
The STEP Unit, which investigates serious or fatal traffic crashes, is one of the Cobb County Police Department’s Special Operations units, and is described on the web page of the Cobb County Police Department as follows:
“The Selective Traffic Enforcement Unit is responsible for investigating all fatal traffic crashes, enforcement of traffic laws in those areas which analysis indicates an elevated amount of crashes.
“They are also responsible for the administration and execution of the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program.
“They also take part in special security details, and investigate crashes involving Department vehicles when requested.”
The STEP Unit is commanded by Lieutenant Lane Johnson.