Police searching for driver of semi that hit and killed pedestrian on I-70

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BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. -- The Missouri Highway Patrol is searching for the driver of a tractor trailer that was involved in a fatal hit-and-run accident along Interstate 70.

According to crash reports, the victim was struck by a semi trailer first, then an SUV and sedan around 10:55 p.m. on Saturday evening. The Missouri State Highway Patrol has identified the victim as 39-year old Jeffrey Koontz of Council Bluffs, Iowa.

Several people were driving down the busy interstate during that time, and were shocked and confused by what they saw.

“We came up to the traffic slowing down and there were a lot of cops and you could see people off to the side of the road and just when you thought you got past the accident you could see that there was clearly someone laying in the road,” said Diana Neuwirth.

She says, waking up today and learning more details about the crash has been heartbreaking. Other witnesses say it serves as a grim reminder about roadway safety.

“You don’t really realize how dangerous motor vehicles are until you really see something like that. It makes me more aware, a lot more aware,” said Kile Swietkoski.

“[This was] definitely a wake-up call, I never seen a dead body before so it was really surreal and kind of put a damper on my mood for the rest of the evening,” adds Mike Pyle.

Koontz worked as a reserve deputy with the Pottawatomie County Sheriff’s Office in Iowa. He was pronounced dead at the scene, and his body was taken to the Jackson County Medical Examiner’s office.