Arrest made in hit-and-run

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Arrest made in hit-and-run
David Paul Walker

HENRY COUNTY, Va. – Virginia State Police Troopers have arrested a Martinsville man in connection with the hit-and-run of a Henry County boy on Thursday (Sept. 23, 2021) on Route 57 in Henry County. After extensive investigation and conducting multiple interviews, state police have identified David Paul Walker, 57, of Martinsville, Va., as the driver of the white Toyota pickup truck that struck the child and then fled the scene. At this stage of the investigation, Walker has been charged with one felony count of hit-and-run. Walker is being held without bond at the Henry County Jail.

The crash occurred at 3:23 p.m. in the 8000 block of Route 57. A Henry County Public Schools bus was stopped in the northbound travel lane to let an 9-year-old student exit the bus. As the child was crossing Route 57, he was struck by a westbound white Toyota pickup truck. The Toyota immediately fled the scene after the crash. The school bus had its flashing lights and stop arm activated at the time of the crash.

By viewing video pulled from the school bus’s onboard camera system, state troopers were able to quickly confirm and identify the suspect vehicle involved in the crash.

“Thanks to multiple tips called in by the public and the persistent hard work of our troopers and special agents, state police was able to identify the suspect driver and take him into custody at approximately 1:30 a.m. Friday,” said Capt. Richard A. Denney, Virginia State Police Salem Division commander. “We are keeping the young boy and his family in our prayers as he continues to recover from his very serious injuries.”

Henry County Commonwealth’s Attorney, Andrew Nester, thanked the Virginia State Police for their expeditious investigation and making the arrest. “Our office will continue to work closely with the Virginia State Police as this case develops further and the criminal charges advance through the court system. If anyone has information regarding this case please contact the State Police.”

The hit-and-run vehicle has also been located and recovered as evidence.

The 8-year-old victim was flown to Roanoke Memorial Hospital. He is still being treated for life-threatening injuries sustained in the crash.

The investigation is still ongoing.