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Utah man chasing dog into road dies after hit-and-run crash

SHARE Utah man chasing dog into road dies after hit-and-run crash

SALT LAKE CITY — Police have confirmed the death of a man who was hit by a truck Friday while chasing after a dog who had run into the road.

Salt Lake police identified the man as 73-year-old Joe Burford, and said he died from his injuries Saturday morning.

Burford had been in critical condition immediately following the crash, which happened near 1657 N. Beck Street.

Salt Lake police said Burford, a dog kennel owner, was returning a leashed dog to its owner Friday evening when the dog ran into traffic and Burford gave chase. A southbound truck hit both Burford and the dog, and the driver momentarily got out of the vehicle to check on Burford before fleeing the scene, according to Salt Lake Police Lt. Russ Arnott.

Salt Lake police said they are seeking the male driver, but have so far offered few details about him. The truck involved was a tan Ford F-150, and a boy appearing to be about 10 years old was in the front passenger seat, according to Arnott.

Anyone who may have information about the case is asked to call Salt Lake police at 801-799-3000.

Becca Hasson, Burford's daughter, called her dad a "wonderful man" and said he was trying to save the dog.

"We all think this was a terrible tragic accident. … It could have happened to anyone. We do not blame anyone for our dad's death. We hope the driver and his son are OK and know we do not blame them."

Police have not released details about the dog's condition following the crash. Hasson also said she has "not heard anything about the dog yet."