A 19-year-old woman who was struck and killed after an out-of-control car hit four people on a footpath has been identified, as police charge a passenger who allegedly pulled the car’s handbrake.
Libby Ruge died in hospital after she was hit by the car when she was walking along a footpath in Wollongong, south of Sydney, on Saturday night, police said.
An 18-year-old woman and a 21-year-old man were also injured, while a 20-year-old male pedestrian escaped injury.
The 18-year-old driver of the car was treated for minor injuries following the crash and on Sunday evening, police said he remained in hospital under police guard.
Police have charged the 21-year-old front seat passenger.
Police will allege the passenger pulled the car’s handbrake before the car then mounted the kerb and stuck the pedestrians before colliding with a power pole on the Princes Highway about 10.30pm on Saturday.
‘A horrible scene’
Tributes have flooded social media for Ms Ruge following news of her tragic death.
“You were the most wonderful girl, growing into the most magnificent woman. I am so lost and can’t find the words,” a relative wrote on Facebook.
A woman said on Instagram she had lost her “best friend and soul mate”, following Ms Ruge’s death.
“Words cannot describe the pain and sorrow in my heart. Libby you shouldn’t have been taken from us it’s just not fair,” she wrote.
“You were my everything and more and I am so lucky to be able to call you my best friend . I love you so much my girl. You will be in my heart forever.”
Emergency services described the fatal accident as "carnage".
"There were a lot of patients lying around," NSW Ambulance Acting Inspector Oliver Aleman told the Illawarra Mercury.
"It's a horrible scene to come to."
The male passenger was charged with dangerous driving occasioning death, two counts dangerous driving occasioning grievous bodily harm, negligent driving occasioning death and negligent driving occasioning grievous bodily harm.
He's due to appear in Wollongong Local Court on Monday.
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