Deadly hit-and-run occurs on metro interstate during heavy rain


MOORE, Okla. (KFOR) – While most of the metro missed out on icy weather, the heavy rain still caused an issue for some drivers.

On Friday morning, emergency crews were forced to shut down the southbound lanes of I-35 near N.W. 12th St. in Moore because of a deadly wreck.

“Did you say there’s a body in the roadway though?” a Moore dispatcher asked. “Yes ma’am. There’s a dead body laying here,” said a frantic 9-1-1 caller.

That gut-wrenching 9-1-1 call was from a passerby who didn’t even witness the wreck.

Drivers were diverted onto the service road as crews worked to clear the scene.

Officials with Oklahoma Highway Patrol told News 4 that one person died in the crash.

Investigators say 22-year-old Nichole Graves was driving a 2007 Ford Fusion southbound on I-35 when she lost control and hit a guardrail. The car then veered across all lanes of traffic and hit the barrier wall.

“I was just driving down the highway on I-35 and there was a car that was spun out and hit the middle guard rail,” said another 9-1-1 caller.

OHP officials say Graves got out of the car and was trying to cross the southbound lanes and was hit by another vehicle.

That vehicle did not stop.

“We believe that she had exited the vehicle at that point [and] attempted to cross the lanes of I-35, and at this point we believe that she was struck by a passing vehicle,” said Lt. Kera Philippi with OHP.

Troopers are now looking for the driver who struck the woman.

“The assumption would be that there would likely be damage to the front of the vehicle, but again we don’t know if we’re looking for a car or truck any colors or anything like that,” Lt. Philippi said.

At this point, the cause of the crash is still under investigation.

OHP officials say the 22-year-old’s tragic death is a reminder to slow down and change lanes.

If you are in an accident, try to stay in your car as much as possible.

“You’re wrapping yourself at least in metal; you have a barrier between you and passing traffic at that point,” Lt. Philippi said. “It takes just a second. If somebody looks down then it’s an accident,” she said.

If you know anything about this incident, call investigators at (405) 425-7620.

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