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Community wants speed enforcement after pedestrian’s death

July 19, 2019
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In this Wednesday, July 17, 2019 photo, evidence marks are seen at the site where Rodney Self was struck by a vehicle at Creswell Avenue and McCormick Street in Shreveport, La. (Sara MacNeil/The Shreveport Times via AP)
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In this Wednesday, July 17, 2019 photo, evidence marks are seen at the site where Rodney Self was struck by a vehicle at Creswell Avenue and McCormick Street in Shreveport, La. (Sara MacNeil/The Shreveport Times via AP)

SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) — Rodney Self was known for wearing a clean pair of khakis and a collared shirt when he walked his short-legged Dachshund.

“He was an old school gentleman,” South Highland resident Rebecca Hanberry said.

Mint green paint against gray pavement marks the spot where Self’s shoe was found in the street. The spray painted circle at the corner of McCormick Street and Creswell Avenue is where Self, 79, was when a driver hit him.

Neighbors say his granddaughter found him after he went for a walk July 9 and didn’t return home for an hour. Self was near a lamp post when a driver struck him and left him lying on the side of the road.

“It’s one thing to lose a family member unexpectedly. It’s another whole level of grief to wonder how long he suffered. If someone just stopped, he might not have died,” said Sylvia Gage, who lives a house away from the intersection where Self was struck.

There’s not a shortage of reckless drivers where Self was killed. Four years ago, someone crashed into a wooden post a few feet away from where he was hit. Drivers cut down Creswell to avoid Line Avenue where they’re more likely to be ticketed.

Gage told The Times Self’s dog was unharmed. As if in response, Hanberry’s tiny Dachshund whimpered. Hanberry, Gage and a third South Highland resident, Laura Mcclintock, met Wednesday in Hanberry’s living room to talk about a lack of speed patrol on Creswell. Hanberry collected 73 signatures for a petition to stop the speeding.

Some solutions the three mentioned were speed bumps, reducing the speed limit and adding stop signs as well as sidewalks to Creswell. The posted speed limit where Self was killed is 35 mph.

Mcclintock, who witnessed a car chased that crossed Creswell, said reducing the speed limit wouldn’t be enough if it’s not enforced.

“Little signs saying your speed is not going to affect somebody who is looking at their cell phone and doesn’t give a rat’s rear end,” Mcclintock said.

One resident who commented on an online forum called Creswell a race track and said C.E. Byrd High School students speed down the road as they come and go from school. Another neighbor complained they saw a police officer speeding down Creswell. The road is also used heavily by work trucks. Gage said the residential roads of the historic neighborhood was never built to deal with traffic.

“There were not the number of cars and these were not thoroughfares. These were residential streets where kids played and still try to,” Gage said. “If the city wants to solve the traffic issue they’ve got to go back to what these streets were designed to hold and it’s not vans, buses, etc.”

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Information from: The Times, http://www.shreveporttimes.com

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