Charlotte high school student hit, killed while trying to catch the bus ID'd

Caroline Hicks | WBTV
Caroline Hicks | WBTV

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - A 15-year-old Olympic High School student who was hit and killed while trying to catch the bus in southwest Charlotte Tuesday morning has been identified.

According to Charlotte-Mecklenburg police, the incident happened on Youngblood Road and Buckthorne Ridge Lane around 6 a.m.

Neighbors said the girl missed the bus and was running to catch it when she was fatally struck by the driver of a 2017 Nissan Murano. Students on the bus saw the incident happen, neighbors say.

CMPD said the student, identified on Wednesday as Zoe Alana Deen, was crossing Youngblood Road to board the bus when she was hit by the driver. MEDIC pronounced Deen dead on scene, police say.

The bus was headed to Olympic High School on Sandy Porter Road.

"Across the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools district and throughout the community, our hearts are heavy and we extend our deepest sympathies to family, friends, loved ones and staff affected after the tragic loss of one of our students following an accident early this morning," Charlotte-Mecklenburg School said in a statement.

Counseling and grief support is being offered for the family and for the school community. CMS asks families to maintain a careful watch on students and to reach out to any CMS staff member for emotional and mental health support.

"Our students embody our community's hopes for the future and we join together today and in the coming weeks to offer comfort, support and sympathy during this difficult time,"  a statement from CMS read.

Neighbors said they've complained to the school board in the past about the lack of lighting at the bus stop on Youngblood Road. Police said the road does not have any overhead street lights and Deen was not wearing any reflective clothing at the time of the incident.

The section of the road where Deen was hit had no crosswalks or pedestrian signals, police said.

Youngblood Road was shut down between Buckthorne Ridge Lane and Dufuskie Drive for some time due to the incident.

Police said speed is not a contributing factor in the wreck.

"CMS and CMPD are cooperatively investigating events from this morning in order to gain clear understanding of this incident and to inform a review of bus stop and transportation safety procedures," CMS said in a statement. "The district asks families, parents, students and all staff to exercise caution and to keep safety top of mind when awaiting transportation to school and back home, as well as while traveling, during each school day."

The driver who struck Deen was not injured and stayed at the scene, officers said.

If you have any information, you're asked to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.

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