Hit and run driver remains at large on Long Island

June 24, 2013 3:18:23 PM PDT
Authorities in Suffolk County say they are looking for a light-colored 2000 to 2003 BMW sedan or station wagon in a hit and rund accident that critically injured a 56-year-old woman.

Karen Benjamin from Coram is struggling to survive after being struck by the hit and run driver on Canal Road in Mount Sinai on Sunday. The impact was so violent that doctors say she nearly lost both of her legs.

The Suffolk County Police Department is asking for help locating the vehicle involved involved in the crash. It is described as a light-colored 2000 to 2003 BMW sedan or station wagon with front and passenger side damage.

The vehicle fled westbound on Canal Road from the vicinity of Mt. Sinai-Coram Road, police said.

Police believe Benjamin was jogging along Canal Road when she was struck around 11:00 on Sunday morning. She lives about two miles from the accident scene.

Benjamin has undergone surgery at Stony Brook University Hospital and remains in critical condition.

"I just don't understand why someone would do this and not stop. Just stop," said the victim's heartbroken daughter, Lindsay Benjamin.

The family is desperate to find out who mowed down the mother of two, leaving her for dead at the side of the road.

"We're praying that Karen has her strength and that with our faith, she'll get through this. But right now it's day to day," said her brother Bob Freedman.

Karen Benjamin is under heavy sedation with trauma to her head and chest, not even the worst of it.

"Her significant injuries are her extremity fractures. Near total amputation of her arm, and her leg is injured as well," said Dr. Michael Paccione of Stony Brook University Hospital. "We still have several trips to the operating room."

"My mom is the strongest woman I know," said Lindsey Benjamin. "That woman has taught me so much my whole life and to see this happen to such a great person, is hurting me so badly inside."