Hit & run victim identified, police locate suspect’s car

SPRINGFIELD – We now know the identity of the young mother killed in a hit and run accident on Sumner Avenue in Springfield Friday night.

Springfield Police Captain William Collins confirmed to 22News the victim is 19 year old Ashley Ballester, who lived on nearby Lester Street.  Earlier police reports estimated the victim was 30 years old.  The confusion was due to the fact that Ballester was not carrying any form of identification.

Ballester’s daughter is almost two years old.  She survived the accident and is being treated at Baystate Medical Center for serious injuries.

Ashley Ballester was crossing Sumner Avenue at around 8:30 Friday night when she was struck by a white Ford Escort wagon.  She and her child were thrown in the air by the impact.  The driver did not stop, and proceeded to drag the empty baby stroller down Lester Street.  A second car hit Ballester, but that driver did stop.

Captain Collins told 22News there are no crosswalks at the spot where Ballester was hit.

Police have located the white Ford Escort on Kensington Street.  The owner told police someone else was behind the wheel without her permission, and she was unaware they had taken the car until after the accident.

Police have not released the name of the suspect yet.