FATAL PEDESTRIAN ACCIDENT
Officers from the Warwick Police Department responded to the area of 139 Jefferson Boulevard on December 15 around 6:59 p.m. for a report of a pedestrian who had been struck by a motor vehicle in the roadway.
Upon arrival on scene, officers located an adult male pedestrian, later identified as Joseph Phillips, 70, of East Providence. The victim was an employee of Enterprise rentals and had just left work at the time of the crash. He was crossing the roadway to get to his personal car when he was struck by a minivan that was driving south on Jefferson Boulevard while he was crossing the roadway easterly. Unfortunately, Mr. Phillips succumbed to his injuries and was deceased at the scene.
Members of the Warwick Police Traffic Division Accident Reconstruction Unit responded and have begun an investigation into the facts and circumstances surrounding the crash. A preliminary investigation revealed that drugs and alcohol, along with texting or cell phone use, were not factors in the collision on the part of the minivan’s driver.
The police are seeking the public’s help in identifying additional vehicles that were traveling north on Jefferson Boulevard towards Interstate 95 and may have also struck the victim.
Any other involved drivers or witnesses to the accident that can provide more information to investigators are asked to contact the Warwick Police Traffic Unit at (401) 468-4343.
According to his obituary, Mr. Phillips was an avid softball player and coach for over 25 years, and always brought his bat bag and a bucket of softballs wherever he went. He was a Vietnam veteran, serving in the U.S. Army.
Joseph Phillips’ funeral will be held on Thursday at 8:45 a.m. from Rebello Funeral Home and Crematory, 901 Broadway, East Providence. A mass of Christian burial will follow at 10 a.m. in Sacred Heart Church, Taunton Avenue, East Providence. Burial with military honors will be in Gate of Heaven Cemetery. Calling hours will be on Wednesday from 4-7 p.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory may be made to the RI Veterans Home Fund, 480 Metacom Avenue, Bristol, RI, 02809.
A woman who told officers, “I am obviously drunk, hurry this up,” before damaging a breathalyzer machine in a fit of rage was recently charged with multiple offenses.
On December 11 at approximately 1:28 a.m., Officer Michael Harris was on routine patrol traveling north on Bald Hill Road in the area of East Avenue when he observed a car traveling south that was stopped at a red light. The car then proceeded through the red light and made a lefthand turn onto East Avenue.
Officer Harris then followed the vehicle, which was swerving and drifting over lane markers. He then activated his cruiser’s overhead lights, but the vehicle operator acted as if they were unaware of the officer behind them. The car continued eastbound while swerving before coming to a stop at the CCRI red light. Officer Harris then activated his spotlight and placed it on the vehicle. As he exited his cruiser, the suspect vehicle then continued on and made a left turn into the Toys R Us parking lot, where it finally stopped and took up multiple parking spots.
According to his report, the officer then made contact with the driver, identified as Christina Lallo, 33, of 10 Miner Street in Westerly. As he approached the car, the patrolman observed the car’s four occupants to be yelling back and forth. Lallo told the officer that they had just left a nightclub and that all parties had been drinking. She stated she was in an argument with her sister, who was seated behind her.
All parties were in an excited state, yelling at each other with some crying. When asked what the argument was about, the occupants replied “nothing.” Throughout the investigation, officers were unable to determine the reason for the fight.
It was observed that Lallo’s eyes were bloodshot and watery, her face severely flushed and red, with a strong odor of alcohol emanating from her person. She told the officer that she had “three or four” drinks of “beer and hard alcohol.” Officer Harris then returned to his cruiser, requested additional assistance, then began to run background checks on all parties in the vehicle. Soon after, Lallo exited the vehicle in an excited state and told Harris she no longer wished to be in the vehicle with her family.
Lallo consented to a series of standardized sobriety tests, during which she stated she “just wanted to get this over with.” Based on her performance and Officer Harris’s experience and training, it was determined that Lallo was unfit to operate a motor vehicle safely. She was arrested and transported to police headquarters, during which time she became enraged, yelling and swearing. Her vehicle was secured in the lot and other officers waited for another party to pick up the passengers.
At headquarters, her tirade continued as she yelled at officers that they were wasting her time and that she wanted to leave. She was seated next to a chemical breathalyzer test, where she yelled at officers that she “just wanted to blow into the [expletive] machine to get this over with.” While giving the suspect instructions, she took the breath tube and blew into it in a strong but brief manner, which was unable to be read.
She was then asked to provide another sample, at which point she went into a “fit of rage, yelling and swearing at officers.” She then stood, grabbed the breath tube and pulled it, ripping the machine from the table, which then smashed onto the table top as its keyboard fell to the ground. She was then removed from the area and advised that a refusal to submit to the test would be entered.
Lallo was issued citations for driving under the influence, refusal to submit to a chemical test, laned roadway violations and vandalism/malicious injury to property for the damage to the breathalyzer machine. After making phone calls, she was unable to obtain a ride and was transported to Kent Hospital for detox.
A Jefferson Boulevard worker who returned to her car at the end of her workday found that her car had paint thrown over it.
Officer Eric Lima was dispatched to the parking lot of 615 Jefferson Boulevard on December 7 around 5:11 p.m. to speak with the victim. There, he was advised that the woman had parked the car around 11:20 a.m., and when she returned at 5 p.m. she noticed that something was spilled and smeared all over her car.
Upon closer inspection, the substance appeared to be a light purple paint that completely covered the driver’s side and was already starting to dry. The paint was also thrown on the windshield and hood, and the victim stated that she would like to file a complaint and press charges if a suspect was found.
A check of the area proved unsuccessful and there were no surveillance cameras in the area. Currently, there are no suspects or witnesses.
On December 5 around 10 p.m., Officer Matthew Higgins was dispatched to a parking lot at 30 Plan Way for a report of a larceny.
There he met with the victim, who told the officer he had parked his vehicle at approximately 8:30 a.m. and returned just before 11 p.m. to find that all the wheels, valued at around $2,000, had been taken from his vehicle. He also noted that the front passenger’s window had been smashed, possibly to obtain the key to the lug nuts from the glove compartment as nothing else was missing from the car.
There were no witness or surveillance cameras filming the area. The case was forwarded to detectives for follow-up.