State police probe pedestrian fatality in Nashua

State police were investigating an adult pedestrian fatality on the F.E. Everett Turnpike southbound in Nashua near the Exit 4 on ramp. (Jeffrey Hastings Photo)

NASHUA — State police are investigating the death of a local woman struck and killed Wednesday evening on the southbound side of the F.E. Everett Turnpike near Exit 4 by a driver who fled the scene.

New Hampshire State Police Troop B says it received a report of a pedestrian in the highway near the Exit 4 off-ramp about 7:05 a.m.

“It was reported that the pedestrian had either fallen or collapsed on the highway,” they said early Thursday. “Within minutes of the original call it was then reported that the pedestrian had been struck by a vehicle.”

Arriving emergency personnel found the victim, later identified as Juliette Koss, 68, was deceased and the vehicle that had struck her had fled the scene, state police said.

“There were several witnesses to this crash all who describe the vehicle involved as a tan colored mid to full-size SUV type vehicle. This vehicle should have damage to the front end and bumper area,” state police said. “At this time it is unclear why the vehicle fled the scene, however all aspects remain under investigation.”

Three lanes of the F.E. Everett Turnpike were closed for 4 hours and traffic diverted as state police, Nashua police and fire, and the New Hampshire Department of Transportation dealt with the accident scene and investigation.

“We are not releasing any further information about this collision or the victim at this time,” Trooper Daniel Quartulli told the New Hampshire Union Leader on Thursday.

It is still not clear what Koss was doing on that section of the turnpike, which is directly adjacent to Greenbriar Terrace nursing home at 55 Harris Road.

Officials with Greenbriar would not comment on whether Koss was a patient at the facility.

“First and foremost we want to extend our sympathy for the tragic event that occurred on the Everett Turnpike Wednesday evening involving a woman who was tragically killed,” said Janelle Fairbrother with Next Step Healthcare, which oversees Greenbriar Terrace. “Skilled nursing facilities, as with other healthcare providers, are bound by patient privacy concerns and regulations, HIPPA, and unable to at any time confirm nor deny the status of any patient or resident.”

Heather Davis, administrator and executive director of Greenbriar, did not return a phone call seeking comment.

Anyone with information on this incident can call Trooper Quartulli at 603-223-8993 or email daniel.quartulli@dos.nh.gov.

Union Leader Correspondent Kimberly Houghton contributed to this report.