Police release name of Roanoke woman killed in hit-and-run on Williamson Road

A 35-year-old woman died in the crash on Williamson Road.

ROANOKE, Va. – On Monday afternoon, the Roanoke Police Department released the name of the woman who died in the hit-and-run crash on Williamson Road on Wednesday.

Jody McFarland, 35, of Roanoke, died after being hit by a car in the 3700 block of Williamson Road at about 6:50 a.m.


Story from January 19

A woman is dead after a hit-and-run in Roanoke on Wednesday morning, according to police.

A woman is dead after a hit-and-run in Roanoke on Wednesday morning, according to police. Police cars and tape flooded Williamson Road after the body was discovered. April Plunkett was on her way to work and tells 10 News she was the one who called 911.

“I thought it was like trash or something, and it was so dark and it was like something black laying halfway in the road I looked and it was a body,” said Plunkett.

Authorities said the incident happened in the 3700 block of Williamson Road around 6:50 a.m. Officers were quick to respond but in the moments leading up to their arrival, Plunkett tried to help.

“I talked to the dispatch and they told me to check to see was she was breathing, and I took my hand and did like this, and I didn’t feel anything, she was just cold.”

When officers arrived, they said they found a woman who was unresponsive and partially in the road. The woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

Some local businesses were just getting ready to open up shop when workers saw all the commotion.

“I showed up around 6:50, there was yellow tape everywhere. Probably about 10 or 15 cops,” said Auto Zone store manager Pedro Edison.

Most of the sidewalks on Williamson Road haven’t been cleared from the snow and ice, causing concern that maybe she was one of the many residents who were walking in the street.

“It’s hard to walk on the sidewalks because there’s ice and there’s snow. I don’t know if she was in the road or whatever or where she was coming from or anything like that,” Plunkett added.

“The roads haven’t been cleared yet, you’ve been seeing people walk in the middle of the street, walking the sidewalk and it’s really dangerous because people are driving, there’s snow there’s ice,” said Edison.

The woman’s identity will not be released until the next-of-kin is properly notified, but Edison wants justice for her.

“I hope they find the person who hit her so they can be held accountable for it,” he said.

Police said this is being investigated as a fatal hit-and-run and the suspect vehicle has not been located, authorities said.

Police are asking anyone with information about this incident to call 540-344-8500. You can also text us at 274637; begin the text with “RoanokePD” to ensure it’s properly sent. Both calls and texts can remain anonymous.


About the Authors:

Samantha Smith joined WSLS 10’s award-winning digital team as a content producer in July 2018.

Jeff Williamson arrived at WSLS 10 in March 2016.