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Vehicle in hit-and-run located after license plate left imprint on bumper

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SALT LAKE CITY — A Bountiful woman is thankful after a Utah Highway Patrol trooper went above and beyond to help her out after a hit-and-run crash.

Haley Hayes was getting off I-15 at the 1300 South exit in Salt Lake City on Tuesday when the driver behind slammed into her 2017 Hyundai Elantra that she got this summer and took off.

"It was stop-and-go traffic. I was slowing down, the cars in front of me were all slowing down. Always when I do that, I look in the review mirror to make sure the guy behind me is slowing down. And this guy didn't even, it's like he didn't even see my brake lights."

Instead of pulling to the side to see if she was OK and to exchange information, the driver took off.

“They tried to swerve, too late, looks like too late, hit and just like swerved, no hesitation,” she said. “I did not believe he wouldn’t pull over.”

She called Utah Highway Patrol, but all she could tell them was it was a white vehicle. “How in the world … I’m going to have to pay for this. I knew I was going to have to,” she said.

She took it to her dealership Wednesday morning to try to get the trunk open so she could get her stuff.

“After I told them my story, one of them pointed to (the bumper) and said, 'Their license plate on your bumper.'”

Not the actual license plate, but an imprint of the license plate.

“I was on my knees with a pencil and a pad of paper trying to, like, what could that be?” she said.

She gave the information to UHP and sent pictures.

Later that day, trooper Charity Thomas called her back and told her the vehicle and the owner were found.

“She went above and beyond, and they are just amazing,”’ Hayes said. “We should be so grateful. I”m so grateful, and I want her to know how grateful I am, and ‘Thank you’ doesn’t do it. It's not enough.”

Hayes said the owner of the car, after he was contacted, told UHP a friend drove it that night. That story remains to be seen. But, at least for Hayes, she won't have to pay to fix the damage because the other driver has insurance.

Contributing: Viviane Vo-Duc


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Alex Cabrero
Alex Cabrero has been reporting for KSL-TV for nearly two decades. He has covered a variety of stories over the years from a variety of places, but he particularly enjoys sharing stories that show what's good in the world.


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