Police: Man suffers minor injuries after stepping into path of car

Published: Monday, March 4, 2013 at 5:06 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, March 4, 2013 at 5:06 p.m.

In 56 years of driving, she had never hit anything or anybody.

Monday afternoon, as Florence Regan drove south on Southwest 13th Street on her way home from work, a man who police said had been drinking stepped into the road as Regan drove by, bumping into the back of her car and suffering non-life-threatening injuries.

“If I’d seen him, I would have stopped,” said Regan, 70.

James Nelson, 57, admitted to police he had been drinking when he stepped into the southbound lanes at the intersection of Southwest 13th Street and Southwest 21st Avenue, Gainesville Police Department spokesman Officer Ben Tobias said.

As Regan headed south in the left lane soon after 2:30 p.m., Nelson bumped into the back passenger side of her car. He was taken to a hospital with some road rash and other minor injuries, police said.

By about 3 p.m, authorities had cleared the scene and traffic was flowing normally again.

Regan was shaken, holding her hand to her mouth as she stood by her car in a nearby parking lot.

“He kept saying he was sorry,” she said.

As officers looked for damage to the car, she told them what really concerned her.

“Who cares about the damage to the car,” she said. “I worry about him.”

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