A Deerfield Beach woman was killed Sunday morning leaving St. Ambrose Catholic Church when an elderly fellow parishioner struck her with a car and dragged her across the lawn.
Broward Sheriff's Office investigators say 66-year-old Luciana Porto was killed around 10 a.m. as morning mass was letting out when 88-year-old Mary Sczepanski accidentally jumped a curb onto the sidewalk.
Sczepanksi had backed her car into a disabled space in the parking lot, and when leaving accidentally put her car in reverse. Apparently startled, she accelerated over a curb stop and onto the sidewalk, striking Porto and dragging her across the lawn before coming to a stop near.
"It was so terrible, when I saw her under the car, I had to turn away," witness Joan Maiorisi told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "She was like a rag doll, limp, with her face in the ground."
Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue Deerfield Beach transported Porto to North Broward Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead shortly after arrival.
Charges, if any, will be pending completion of the traffic homicide investigation, BSO spokesman Mike Jachles said in a statement. The weekend was one of the deadliest in recent memory, with 10 people and an unborn baby killed in car accidents in just 24 hours in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties.
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