Phyllis Joris, 34, said she forbids her children from walking to school after one of her oldest was almost hit by a car while crossing the street. (Lauren Lumpkin, Baltimore Sun video)
Lutherville-Timonium residents packed the Pot Spring Elementary School cafeteria Wednesday night to call for bump strips, stop signs and other traffic signals on the street where a girl and her grandmother were struck and killed by a vehicle last week.
“It’s out of control,” said Wendy Elkins, 42. She said her 5- and 7-year-old children are no longer allowed to play in the front yard of their home.
Deborah Limmer, 60, was walking with her 5-year-old granddaughter, Delaney Gaddis, on Girdwood Road on the morning of July 23 when police said an SUV veered onto the sidewalk and struck them. Callie Noble Schwarzman has been charged with vehicular homicide and driving under the influence in the crash.
Residents who live on Girdwood Road said accidents are common. Some have seen cars totaled. Others at the meeting said they regularly see drivers hit fire hydrants or hop the street’s grassy median.
Callie Noble Schwarzman was arrested Tuesday night on charges that she violated probation for a 2017 drunken driving offense in Carroll County. Investigators obtained a warrant for her arrest Wednesday for charges related to the deaths of 60-year-old Deborah Limmer and 5-year-old Delaney Gaddis.
“I’ve had three cars hit in the last three years,” said Tom McComas, 56. The engineer and Girdwood Road resident called for a “permanent solution” to curb speeding, such as rumble strips or stop signs.
“It’s no exaggeration to say she was the center of our family,” Tommy Limmer said of her mother, Deborah Limmer.
The meeting attracted a crowd of residents, parents and city officials. Johnny Olszewski Jr., the Democratic nominee for Baltimore County executive, was in attendance. His Republican opponent, Al Redmer, was not there but was represented by a community liaison, Justin Kinsey.
While the majority of residents called for speed bumps and signage to slow traffic, Rebecca Downie, 67, demanded more police.
“It doesn’t matter how many speed bumps there are or stop signs. It doesn’t matter if people don’t adhere to it,” the retired banker said.
“I think our prime concern is that our kids are able to walk to school safely,” said Phyllis Joris, 34, who said one of her children was almost hit by a car while walking to school. “There’s a lot of young families that all walk to school.”