Eyewitness: Pedestrian killed by bus was in crosswalk

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Providence police have identified the woman killed by a bus Wednesday morning while crossing the street near Kennedy Plaza in downtown.

Providence police confirmed for Eyewitness News that the bus hit and killed a pedestrian – since identified as Michelle Cagnon, 30, of Cumberland –  around 8 a.m.

By late morning, the yellow police tape that cordoned off the scene most of the morning had been removed and the green Peter Pan bus towed from the scene. But the investigation was just beginning.

Police said the driver, identified as Matthew J. Reidy of Taunton, was making a left turn from Washington Street at the time of the incident. An eyewitness said the victim was in the crosswalk at the time.

“All I heard was ‘smack’ and she went under the bus,” said Casey Lee. “The driver was doing about 15 to 20. The woman was in the middle of the crosswalk.”

Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven Pare said it appears the woman was in the crosswalk “but, we’re reconstructing. There’s video.”

Maj. Thomas Verdi of the Providence Police Department said the incident is a tragedy.

“It’s a true tragedy this morning. You have a completely innocent female struck and killed,” he said.

Eyewitness News spoke with Chris Crean, Peter Pan’s vice president of safety and security, about the investigation.

He said the bus company is working very closely with state and local police. He said Reidy has been with the company for about a year and described his record as “impeccable.”

Crean confirmed Reidy has been placed on temporary leave and said tests for alcohol or drugs have so far come back negative. Crean said Reidy was not hurt in the accident, he was “very distraught” about the incident.

As for the victim, Eyewitness News has learned Cagnon had been an employee at Bank of America for nine years. The bank released the following statement.

“We are deeply saddened to hear about Michelle’s passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends at this difficult time.”

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