Witnesses to deadly crash detained suspect trying to flee from scene

The man who police said tried to run after he was involved in a crash that killed a 17-year-old has made his initial court appearance.
Published: Mar. 2, 2021 at 5:00 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) – One of the men who saw a driver trying to run away from the scene of a crash that resulted in the death of a 17-year-old girl said he could not help but get involved.

“There wasn’t nothing that was going to stop me from getting involved,” Robert Shaw, who was working nearby at the time, said. “I have two young daughters. And when I seen it was a young girl, I would have done anything to catch him.”

Michael Dewitt, 27, of Louisville, was allegedly driving a stolen Ford F-350 in the 7800 block of Dixie Highway when the pickup crossed into the southbound lanes around 6:30 p.m. Monday and crashed into another vehicle head-on, according to an arrest report.

After Dewitt’s vehicle stopped, police said he ran without stopping to help the driver of the car he hit. That driver, Madelynn Noel Troutt, 17, of Louisville, was taken to UofL Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

When Shaw came across Dewitt, he said could tell Dewitt was inebriated and would not be easy to take down, but tried anyway.

“Another guy actually helped me catch him, and then two more guys helped sit on him,” Shaw said, “and he was so strung out on something, it was all we could do to actually hold him until the cops got there. He bit me in the leg, and it was just all we could do to hold him. I’m glad we were there.”

According to Louisville Metro police, Dewitt was under the influence of Amphetamines and Benzodiazepines.

LMPD said at the time of the crash Dewitt was driving a vehicle that had been reported stolen to the Shelby County Sheriff’s office and that he had a Glock 27 and an assault rifle that were also reported as stolen in the vehicle. Dewitt was driving on an expired Kentucky learners permit at the time of the crash, according to his arrest slip.

Dewitt was booked into Louisville Metro Department of Corrections and charged with murder, operating a vehicle while under the influence of a controlled substance, leaving the scene of an accident; failure to render aid or assist with death or serious injury, receiving stolen property, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of a handgun by a convicted felon and theft by unlawful taking.

During his arraignment Tuesday morning, Dewitt’s bond was set at $500,000 cash and he was appointed a public defender.

Dewitt’s next court date was set for March 10.

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