Woman Was On Crosswalk When Seattle Police Car Struck, Killed Her

By Zuri Anderson

January 26, 2023

Photo: GoFundMe for Jaahnavi Kandula's family

The Seattle Police Department has confirmed Jaahnavi Kandula was on a crosswalk when she was struck and killed by a marked police vehicle earlier this week.

According to a police update posted at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday (January 25), the 23-year-old pedestrian was crossing from east to west when the collision happened near Dexter Avenue North and Thomas Street Monday night (January 23).

The driving officer was responding to an unspecified "priority one call" alongside the Seattle Fire Department, striking Kandula and leaving her with critical injuries. Police initially said the officer was heading to the scene "at the request" of firefighters before clarifying they were both responding at the same time.

The victim received CPR and life-saving measures before being rushed to Harborview Medical Center, where she later died. The only thing known about the driving officer is that he's been with the department since November 2019, according to police.

KOMO revealed that Kandula was a graduate student at Northeastern University in Seattle. Originally from Bengaluru, India, she was pursuing a Master of Science in Information Systems and was set to graduate in December 2023.

"Jaahnavi is remembered as a stellar student and a delightful and effervescent human being. She was a close friend to many and friends shared that they loved her bubbly laugh, sense of humor, and infectious personality. Her loss will be felt deeply by students, staff, and faculty across campus," David Thurman, Dean of Northeastern University, said in a letter to students Wednesday.

There's a GoFundMe to support Kandula's family back in India.

SPD's Traffic Collision Investigation Squad is investigating the incident.

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