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Man 'took the hit for the kids' and died when car sped onto Maine baseball field, witness says

Police arrested Carol Sharrow, a 51-year-old from Sanford, Maine, after she is accused of driving her car onto a little league baseball field on Friday and striking Douglas Parkhurst, who later died of his injuries.
Police arrested Carol Sharrow, a 51-year-old from Sanford, Maine, after she is accused of driving her car onto a little league baseball field on Friday and striking Douglas Parkhurst, who later died of his injuries. Screenshot from Facebook

It was supposed to be a fun evening of children playing baseball — but then a car sped onto the field in Sanford, Maine.

The game was in session and children were still on the field at around 7 p.m. Friday when police say 51-year-old Carol Sharrow drove her maroon Honda through the main gate, according to the Journal Tribune.

She struck and killed 68-year-old Douglas Parkhurst, police told News Center Maine, and then fled the scene in her car. She was later arrested at her home and charged with manslaughter.

Witness Justin Clifton, who was playing basketball nearby when the incident happened, said Parkhurst scarified himself to save the kids.

"I saw the car pull out of the gate right over there," he said, "and this guy had some kids with him. After the car got off the field, (the driver) came to the gate and the older guy pushed the kids right out of the way.

"He took the hit for the kids."

The woman hit a closed gate, and then the main gate, when trying to get off the field, Sanford Police Cpl. Matthew Gagne told the Journal Tribune. There is no known motive as police continue to investigate.

Police say Sharrow was driving "erratically" — but didn't hit anybody while they were on the field, WGME reported.

A video of the car speeding on the field was posted to Facebook.

A woman named Shelley Grumann wrote on Facebook that she was at the baseball game, according to The Journal Tribune, and estimated that about 200 people were nearby when the car barreled onto the field.

“I saw the smoke from the tires and could smell the burning rubber," she reportedly wrote. "I was just maybe 20 feet away.”

Sanford Maine Little League posted a status on Facebook, writing that "our baseball community was struck by tragedy tonight."

"We encourage any community members that can make it, players to come with their jerseys on, to come support these 8,9&10 years olds," the status read. "Let’s come together to show community pride and help these boys feel safe to return to their beloved field."

But Clifton lamented that children might feel unsafe when playing on the field in future games.

"We can’t even have kids play baseball without someone getting hurt," he told News Center Maine. "You get very angry as well. You just have a lot of emotions when you see that."

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