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February 06, 2023

Driver wanted in fatal hit-and-run outside McDonald's in Bucks County

The owner of a gray pickup truck that struck a pedestrian in Levittown on Sunday may have acted in self-defense after an 'altercation,' authorities said

Investigations Hit-And-Runs
McDonalds Hit Run StreetView/Google Maps

A man was fatally struck by a pickup truck in the parking of lot of the McDonald's at 7700 Bristol Pike in Levittown, Bucks County on Feb. 5.

A man was fatally struck by a pickup truck in the parking lot of a McDonald's in Levittown on Sunday afternoon, authorities in Bucks County said. Police are now searching for the driver, who may have been threatened by the pedestrian, according to investigators. 

The crash happened shortly after 4 p.m. in the lot of the fast food restaurant at 7700 Bristol Pike, police said. 

The man who died was identified Monday afternoon as Jason Smith, 47. 

Before Smith was struck, he had pulled into the lot of the McDonald's and parked. A gray truck believed to be a Chevrolet Silverado then backed into the spot right next to Smith's car. 

Smith, who then left his car, got into an "altercation" with the driver of the pickup truck before he was run over, Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub said Monday afternoon at a press briefing. 

Surveillance footage from the McDonald's showed Smith retrieve something from his car and then approach the pickup truck, police said. The interaction between Smith and the truck driver lasted less than a minute before the truck ran Smith over and fled on Route 13 toward Tullytown.  

At the scene, authorities found a carpenter's hammer nearby Smith's body. 

Smith was taken to Jefferson Torresdale Hospital, where he died of injuries to his chest. 

"We have neither ruled out a legal self-defense claim, nor the belief that the driver leaving the scene due to immediate safety concerns may have been justified under the circumstances," Weintraub said. "This is all open. As of right now, we want to draw no improper conclusions."

It's unknown whether the driver of the truck was a man or a woman. 

Investigators have urged the driver to come forward to police. Authorities are also reviewing tips from the public in an effort to locate the vehicle, which had 4x4 stickers on both sides of the truck bed, black rims and a front vanity plate whose number police were unable to identify. 

Authorities shared photos of the truck, which is believed to be a 2013 model. The truck may be missing an oval-shaped, black plastic trim piece meant to cover a fog lamp opening. 

The Bristol Township Police Department and the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office is asking for the public’s help...

Posted by Bucks County District Attorney's Office on Monday, February 6, 2023

"This is already a tragedy, but I would hate to have it compounded by letting it remain a mystery," Weintraub said. 

Anyone with information about this crash is asked to contact Bristol Township Police at (267) 812-3056.