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Young Cyclist Hit, Killed In Northwest Charlotte

police tape

A bicyclist was hit and killed by a driver Friday night in northwest Charlotte in what the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department describes as a hit and run. Police have charged a 19-year-old who they say was driving a stolen car.

The collision was first reported by a witness at 5:40 p.m., who told police that a gray Honda Civic sedan had struck a bicyclist on Glenwood Drive and continued driving toward I-85 with the bicycle stuck beneath the car.

Responding officers found the juvenile victim lying in the roadway with life-threatening injuries and rushed him to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 6:16 p.m. Because he is a juvenile, police are withholding his name and age.

Neither the driver nor the car were on the scene when officers arrived, although roughly an hour later, police were called by a woman who said her son had hit a person while driving that day and wished to turn himself in.

Officers detained the woman's son, identified as Rodney McCorkle Jr., 19, and searched his car, finding drug paraphernalia. Officers also determined the car had been reported stolen.

Police say an initial investigation suggests the cyclist was thrown onto the hood of the car and into the windshield by the collision, while the bicycle became stuck underneath the vehicle.

Immediately after the crash, police say McCorkle continued to drive for a short distance before braking, causing the cyclist to fall off the hood, then continued to drive with the bicycle still under the car before turning onto I-85 north.

The two-lane stretch of Glenwood Drive where the collision happened is lit by streetlights at night, though there are no bike lanes in either direction. Cars are limited to a speed of 35 miles per hour, and police say they do not believe excessive speed or impairment are factors in the crash.

McCorkle has been arrested and charged with felony hit and run, possession of a stolen vehicle, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was previously charged with felony breaking and entering in 2017, according to public records from the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office.

Deadly crashes involving cyclists are rare, though not unprecedented, in Charlotte. In 2017, five cyclists were killed in motor vehicle crashes in the city, and in 2018, three people died, according to The Charlotte Observer.