PHOENIX — An anonymous tip led the Phoenix Police Department to make an arrest in the hit-and-run accident that injured one of their motorcycle officers early Monday morning.
Elizabeth Eaton, 52, was arrested and accused of leaving the scene of a serious injury collision that left Officer Adam O’Conner injured and lying in the road, near 26th Avenue and Bethany Home Road.
Court documents said Eaton was not under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident.
Officer O’Conner was on a motorcycle traveling east on Bethany Home Road around 12:30 a.m. on Monday. when a dark-colored SUV turned left on 26th Avenue, cutting him off and colliding with him, authorities said.
The accident was caught on surveillance video from a nearby business, The Lunch Box Café. The footage shows the moment of impact, the driver of the vehicle coming to a stop, reverse, and then drive south on 26th Avenue.
O’Conner broke his right leg and ankle and required immediate surgery after the accident, authorities said.
During their investigation, detectives collected surveillance video, vehicle debris from the scene and spoke to witnesses, one telling officers the driver had gray hair, court documents said.
Investigators found a 2016 Dodge Journey parked in Eaton’s back yard near 16th Avenue and Camelback Road, authorities said. The vehicle allegedly had damage matching the collision and other damage seen in the video surveillance.
An anonymous tip helped authorities locate the 2016 Dodge Journey and find Eaton’s location, police records said.
Authorities said Eaton was arrested near 18th Avenue and Glendale Road, about two miles from the scene of the crash.
While being detained, officers asked Eaton her name and they allege she said, “you should have seen how fast [the officer] was going,” police records said.
As the officer attempted to read Eaton her Miranda rights, court documents allege she said, “I was going to turn myself in [Tuesday] morning.”
During her first initial appearance with a judge on Tuesday, Eaton asked about the officer’s condition. He thanked her for the question but told her he didn’t have that information and “wouldn’t want to invertedly tell you that.”
Court records show Eaton had a previous DUI and endangerment conviction from 2000.
Officer O’Conner is assigned to the traffic bureau and has been with the department for 16 years.
Eaton was given a $100,000 secured bond. Her next court appearance is January 4.
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Arizona's Silent Witness program allows people to send in tips and share information about crimes happening within their local communities.
The program shares unsolved felony case information in multiple ways, including TV, radio and social media.
Anyone who has information on a crime or recognizes a suspect described by the program is asked to call 480-948-6377, go to the program's website online or download the Silent Witness app to provide a tip. The identity of anyone who submits a tip is kept anonymous.
Calls to Silent Witness are answered 24/7 by a live person and submitted tips are accepted at all times. Submitted tips are then sent to the detective(s) in charge of the specific case.
Individuals who submit tips that lead to an arrest or indictment in the case can get a reward of up to $1,000.