Family, friends mourn hit-and-run victim

By Elizabeth Campbell - Reporter , Chris Robbins - Producer
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Courtesy of St. Augustine Record

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. - The St. Johns County Sheriff's Office continues to search for the person responsible for hitting and killing a St. Augustine teenager Saturday night.

Haley Smith, 15, was walking with friends on Kenton Morrison Road around 8:30 Saturday night when she was hit. The driver did not stop, and Haley's loved ones have been posting their thoughts and prayers on social media. 

The driver that hit Smith took off after hitting her, leaving law enforcement scrambling for clues that will lead them to the person responsible.

Police are looking for a small pickup truck, possibly gold in color. It was last seen going southbound on Holmes Boulevard. 

"I would really like for whoever killed Haley to come forward and turn themselves in, or if anyone knows any information, if they would contact the Sheriff's office so we could get some closure for Haley," said Smith's mom, Jo-Lee Manning.

On Sunday, loved ones of Haley shared their thoughts on Facebook. 

Edward Murray posted: "I knew Haley fairly well. She used to come over and visit her friend where we all lived. She was very smart, and very pretty. Halley will be dearly missed and I only pray that all the talking we did, she accepted Christ as her personal Savior. My prayers for the family's loss." 

Smith's friend Megan Strickland told Channel 4 they were friends for seven years.

Strickland posted: "my best friend died. I love u my sister Haley Smith." 

Smith was a sophomore at St. Augustine High School. The St. Johns County school district released the following statement to Channel 4:

"We will have our crisis team at St Augustine High School as long as needed to support student and staff. We are certainly distressed about this tragedy." 

Smith's family said they're not sure how they're going to afford her funeral. The family has started an account in her name -- Haley Nicole Smith -- at First Community Bank in St. Augustine for anyone who would like to donate.

Saturday's hit-and-run comes just a little over a week after 43-year-old Randy Miller was hit and killed while riding his bike on SR-16, just West of Four Mile Road. That driver didn't stop either.

Anyone with information on the drivers involved in either of these cases is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 888-277-TIPS

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