A 72-year-old woman from Johnson City was killed on Sunday afternoon when a drunk driver hit while fleeing police outside of a store in the Oakdale Commons.

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According to a press release from the Johnson City Police Department, officers were responding to check the welfare of a man believed to be intoxicated and who had entered two separate vehicles in the Oakdale Commons parking lot. When officers arrived, the man fled the scene and allegedly struck 72-year-old Elizabeth Atkinson, who was on her way out of a store in the Oakdale Commons.

Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News (file)
Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News (file)

Atkinson was transported to Wilson Hospital, but did not survive the injuries she sustained.

The driver of the vehicle, 20-year-old Rajee Almashni of Binghamton, allegedly continued to flee after striking Atkinson, heading south to State Route 201 South, then onto Floral Avenue and Baldwin Street, where Almashni's car was disabled and he was forced to flee on foot. Officers found him shortly after and he was taken into custody.

According to the press release, Almashni was charged with DWI after submitting to Field Sobriety Tests. Law enforcement officials determined that Almashni attempted to steal property inside the Oakdale Commons, then fled security to the parking lot, entered somebody else's car, stole property from that car, and then entered his own car to flee from police.

Almashni was charged with murder in the second degree, vehicular manslaughter in the second degree, leaving the scene of a fatal motor vehicle accident, unlawful fleeing in the first degree, reckless endangerment in the first degree, driving while intoxicated, and grand larceny in the fourth degree.

As of Monday morning, he was being held at Broome County central arraignment and to await arraignment this evening.

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