PARMA HEIGHTS, OH (WOIO) - Parma Heights police say three people are still hospitalized and one woman is still critically injured with brain damage after a car plowed through the dance floor at an outdoor concert at Commons Park.
Police are not releasing the name of the 74-year-old woman, whom they say hit the gas instead of the brakes as she was trying to pull out of her parking spot right next to the dance floor.
Detective Sgt. Steve Scharschmidt was on the scene not long after the accident.
He said a total of eight people were hurt. Some were treated at the scene, including the driver. Six others were sent to area hospitals; five to MetroHealth Medical Center and one to University Hospitals Parma Medical Center. Two are in serious condition.
"Instead of hitting the brakes, she hits the gas and the way she was angled, she went right through the dance floor right here. She makes a loop, a circle around, she strikes this telephone pole, breaks her mirror off and hits the car next to her - almost coming to final rest where she began," described Scharschmidt.
Concetta Laguardia of Strongsville says her car was hit, but luckily she wasn't anywhere near the dance floor at the time of the accident. She says police asked her to help them calm down the driver as they worked through the scene.
"She was so nervous. She kept saying to me, 'are the police going to take me to jail?' I said, 'no, the police are not going to take you to jail," described LaGuardia, "all you can do is hope that these people that are in the hospital get better and everything is okay for them and for her too, because that's gotta be a horrible feeling."
Surveillance video shows the car going forward and then reverse in a circle around the floor, hitting the dancers, a telephone pole and another car before stopping.
Sunday's incident happened during a Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin summer band tribute concert. More than 100 people were in attendance.
Those hurt were dancing on a makeshift platform put out for concert-goers at Greenbrier Commons. Police said most of the victims were older as the event caters to an older crowd. The city holds several events and concerts during the summer months.
So far, the 74-year-old woman has not been charged. Police say they will submit their report to the prosecutor's office.
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