All Sections

Home | Crime

Boyfriend of hit-and-run victim: 'She's a human being. She's not an animal'

Union Leader Correspondent

February 05. 2018 9:11PM

Dunkin' Donuts employee Ilene Sullivan remains on life support after an alleged hit-and-run in Epping last week. Courtesy 

Tim Clements holds a photograph of his longtime girlfriend, Ilene Sullivan (inset), who was critically injured when she was hit by a truck last week in an Epping parking lot. (Jason Schreiber/UNION LEADER CORRESPONDENT)

T im Clements says he can’t understand how someone could drive into his girlfriend, knock her to the ground, and then “leave her for dead.”

“She’s a human being. She’s not an animal,” the Lee man said Monday as he looked over photographs of Ilene Sullivan, his girlfriend of 16 years who is now fighting for life.

The 55-year-old Sullivan remains on life-support at Portsmouth Regional Hospital. Police said she was struck by a pickup truck in the parking lot of the Dunkin’ Donuts/Xtra Mart in Epping just before 4 a.m. on Jan. 31 and left unconscious.

The driver of the pickup, Andrea Rich, 55, of Epping, was arrested about five hours later and charged with felony conduct after an accident.

Police said surveillance camera footage showed Rich getting out of the truck to look at Sullivan after she was hit and then getting back in and driving away.

Clements said Sullivan, who lives in Lee and has worked at the Dunkin’ Donuts at Xtra Mart for eight years, was outside on a smoking break when she was struck and left in the parking lot like a “squirrel or a chipmunk.”

“It’s not right. If it was an accident you stop and call 911 and get help. If she had called 911 after she hit her it probably would have been different,” he said. “It’s a sad world we’re living in.”

Police said they believe Sullivan was left unconscious on the pavement in frigid temperatures for 10 to 15 minutes before a customer at the drive-thru came along and found her.

She suffered a severe head injury and was placed on life support. Clements has visited her at the hospital; he said she’s shown no improvement.

“She hasn’t even opened her eyes since that happened,” he said.

Sullivan was listed in critical condition Monday afternoon, a hospital spokesman said.

Epping Police Chief Michael Wallace and State Police Trooper Tom Conlon examine the area where Ilene Sullivan was found injured and unconscious early in the morning of Jan. 31. (Jason Schreiber/Union Leader Correspondent)

Clements, 52, said he’s been in shock ever since police showed up at the Lee home he shares with Sullivan and knocked on the door to inform him of the accident.

“I’m still scared to death,” he said.

Sullivan is a well-known Dunkin’ Donuts employee. Clements said she worked at a Dunkin’ Donuts at a Shell station in Epping for about four years before moving to the location at the Xtra Mart.

“She loved this job. Everyone loves her. She would do anything for you,” he said.

Rich remains free on bail pending arraignment on Friday. She refused to comment on the accident after she was bailed out and released from custody at the police station following her arrest.

Police said it’s possible she could face additional charges.

“I hope she gets everything she deserves,” Clements said.

General News Crime Epping Lee

More Headlines

Animal Control officer guilty in groping case