Students Worried After Wilkes Student Hit by Car

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WILKES-BARRE -- The young woman hit by a car Sunday night in Wilkes-Barre is still in critical condition at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center. We learned on Monday that she's a sophomore at Wilkes University.

Police say a car heading toward downtown Wilkes-Barre hit a young woman who was trying to cross the street near Kirby Park. It happened just before 6 p.m. Sunday. The victim was Wilkes University student Rebecca Filipski, 20, of Peckville.

Skylar Shepp is a freshman at Wilkes. She was one of many students who got an email from the university about the crash.

"It makes me very wary about the area."

Wilkes University students say a parking lot for off-campus parking for Wilkes students is right next to Kirby Park, and that's why they say there are a lot of Wilkes students who walk around this area on the border of Kingston and Wilkes-Barre.

"I think that it's really terrifying to know that Wilkes students aren't safe walking from campus down to go get their cars because people should know that it's a campus area," said Shepp.

"It's just nuts. I mean you hear about stuff like this happening all the time in different places, but you never actually think of it happening 20 feet from where you park your car," said Wilkes junior Nicholas Hillman.

Witnesses told Newswatch 16, the car seemed to be speeding along Market Street. Police say the driver of the car is Keith Yekel of Wilkes-Barre. As of now, he has not been charged.

Filipski is still listed in critical condition at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center near Wilkes-Barre.

"I mean I hope she's alright, definitely hope she's OK. Hope everyone else is real careful when it comes to parking over there and stuff," said Hillman.


  • PF

    the car was going so fast that a young womens body was hit with so much force that the mirror flew off the car and caused that dent. So regardless of what you want to say about the victim not being careful, I believe it was the driver who was not very careful. you should be able to see a person crossing the street just as much as they should be able to see a car, and you should have control of your vehicle and be able to stop. end of story.

  • mary

    Everyone needs to pause and stop pointing fingers unless you were an eye witness. Hopefully there are traffic or security cameras in the area that will aaid the police in their investigaion. The school should also take this opportunity to make areas where students frequently cross have the appropriate traffic signals or pedestrian signs. As for the young man my heart goes out to him, I’m sure he did not plan to hit someone that night and he has to live with that. Rebecca is still in critical condition and has a long road of recovery ahead of her, my thought and prayers go out to her and her family who have been by her side doing everything they can.

  • Michelle

    ive known rebecca for a very long time and shes very careful when crossing the roads and to see this happen is unbareable……i just pray to god she will be ok and for anyone that is saying these rude comments on here you have no clue what happened so shut your mouths she is a very strong person and she will recover and be as strong maybe stronger then she once was god bless her and her family

  • Steve

    Don’t forget the young man who hit this woman is suffering too. He must have been horrified to suddenly see a person in the street. His life is forever affected too. He did the right thing and stayed on scene. So often these days it’s a hit and run that makes the news. Give the guy a break until all is said and done. Not he was on the sidewalk when this happened.

    • Anna

      Steve, I really appreciate someone seeing the point of view from the other party involved. Thank you for looking at the bigger picture!

  • Felicia

    When will people learn that not everything you hear in the news is true? Just trust me when I say, as someone who is personally involved in the situation and who actually got to talk to the boyfriend and so on, there are many parts to this story and other newscasts that are misleading and some statements are completely wrong. The only thing people should be worried about right now is that this young women, who is a sister to me and roommate, makes a speedy recovery. Not making up things like she hasn’t looked both ways and that she would have been able to see him for blocks. Its disgusting to people try to tear apart such a wonderful young girl who is simply just trying to fight for her live and recover.

    • Anna

      It is equally as disgusting that they are trying to tear apart a young man who stayed on the scene and did everything in an attempt to aid her as well as answer every question asked by authorities. A young man who is just as upset as the Wilkes community that Rebecca sustained injuries and is hoping for her quick recovery. It seems to me that it was simply an accident on the part of two good people that ended in a way no one had expected.

      • Felicia

        I never attempted to attack him. I do not know him and therefore have not made any judgments of his character. I was only defending my close friend and sister.

      • Anna

        I understand. By “them” I simply meant the media. It’s sad how far reaching they be in order to gain attention for a specific story.

  • Anna

    Speeding excessively? So you were there on the scene then and saw this happen? She crossed close to the middle of the bridge where there is no crosswalk, following her boyfriend who darted out first. Learn the facts before you start making the driver out to be a monster. The police report removed speeding all together. Prayers to her and her family but learn the rules of the road. It’s the responsibility of the walker as much as the driver.

  • R. Frank

    Praying for her and her family. But even my 17yr old daughter has complained that the college students don’t look before they walk out. Not saying this was the case here, but it is true. Many students have walked out right in front of us off the sidewalk without looking numerous times. Just being in a crosswalk does not eliminate the pedestrian’s responsibility. If my car is right there, you cannot just jump out into traffic, expecting that too-close car to magically stop because you are in a crosswalk. And another thing, eye contact is very important. If you don’t know the driver sees you, then don’t walk out. I don’t care who has the right of way. This truly isn’t just for college students. Road repairmen will walk right out without looking all the time.

  • Joe

    Wow, some very disrespectful people on here… Keep in mind pedestrians have the right of way.. And also if she was able to see him coming blocks away then he sure as hell was able to too.. I’m not saying they weren’t both in the wrong.. But that’s why they call it an ACCIDENT.

    • Kevin K

      Yes, pedestrians have the right of way in CROSSWALKS. If that’s the case the driver should be cited. Having attended there I’m also aware of how little students pay attention to anything outside of their little bubble. If you’re correct she had blocks to get out of the way. Accidents are preventable. For all anyone knows she stepped out in front of the car. Happens all the time.

    • shagtastique

      Check your facts, there, Joe. But here’s a hint. Pedestrians do NOT always have the right of way. They do only when they have a proper walk signal in the direction that they are traveling. Or if the crosswalk is marked otherwise. A large red car is much easier to see from XXX distance than a person from the same distance.

  • Steve

    If you’re old enough to be in college, you should know how to cross a street. The students in that area rarely look before stepping off the curb. Hope she turns out ok.
    Never assume a car is going to stop for you, even in the crosswalk.

  • KM

    OMG, prayers for her and her family, there should be some kind of cross walk above traffic and a slow speed limit for these students to ensure their safety!

  • shagtastique

    The car did not come out of nowhere. The newspapers reported that the car was heading eastbound – which means from Kingston toward Wilkes-Barre. Heading in that direction, Market street is a dead-straight shot all the way up to Kingston Corners. At the spot where she was hit, you can see a car approaching for blocks.

  • Kelly ODwyer

    I hope she is ok. I also hope she wasn’t walking because the shuttle was late or didn’t show, as has happened in the past. They are on time in the morning, but not so much in the evening.

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