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BYU coed is injured in hit-run

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PROVO — A Brigham Young University coed was injured Wednesday morning when she was struck by a car in a hit-and-run incident allegedly involving a prison parolee who had served time on a murder conviction.

Sara Young, 21, was holding an orange flag as she crossed University Avenue in the crosswalk at 1840 North about 11:20 a.m. when she was hit by an older sedan, said Provo police Lt. Rich Ferguson.

Most traffic had stopped to let her pass, but the car that struck her swerved around the stopped cars and into the bike lane, Ferguson said. Police estimated the car was traveling at about 25 mph when it hit Young. Young was tossed against another vehicle by the impact.

Witnesses said the man driving the vehicle drove in a circle three times before stopping, getting out and walking over to where Young was lying and talking to her.

"Originally, we thought it was just a hit and run," said Holly Young, Sara Young's mother. "I was relieved to find out he cared enough to get out to see if she was OK."

Ferguson said the man told witnesses he was going to park his car but instead sped away.

Police officers arriving at the scene issued an alert, and the car was spotted near 200 South, where it was pulled over.

Young was taken to the Utah Valley Regional Medical Center emergency room. She was admitted with a broken cheekbone. Her parents said that she has no memory of the accident and is having difficulty remembering events of the past couple months.

"When we first got to the ER, she kept on asking, 'What's going on? Is it my fault? Is he OK?"' Holly Young said. "She's been more concerned about him than herself." She said her daughter told officers at the scene that she forgives the driver.

William Clayton, 56, who was released earlier this year from prison after serving time for a Provo murder in the early 1980s was arrested and booked into the Utah County Jail for investigation of driving with no insurance, driving on a suspended driver's license, hit and run with injuries or death, driving under the influence of alcohol, possession of marijuana and possession of prescription drugs without a prescription.

Young's family expected her to be released from the hospital this morning.


E-mail: asnyder@desnews.com