NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - The family of a tourist killed in a gruesome hit and run pleads with the public for help finding his killer. Josh Woodruff was struck at Decatur and Dumaine Street in the early morning hours of New Year's Day. His body was then dragged underneath the driver's car from the French Quarter to the West Bank.
We spoke with Woodruff's brother Wednesday, he says they need to know what happened, "we're all kind of figuring out how the world works again, I think we are all trying to pick ourselves up and move on to the extent that we can, it's still very, very difficult," said Ben Woodruff.
Josh Woodruff, an Omaha-native and Harvard graduate, was visiting from Los Angles when he was hit around 3 am New Year's Day at Decatur and Dumaine. But, police say the person behind the wheel took off, dragging the 28-year old underneath for miles. Investigators say they've been able to figure out the driver's route that morning by piecing together surveillance video and talking with witnesses.
After hitting Woodruff on Dectaur Street, police say the suspect went the wrong way down Madison Street, then turned right onto Chartres Street, left on Ursuline, right on Burgundy Street, left on Barracks Street, right on Rampart, left on Esplanade Avenue, left on North Claiborne Avenue, then on to Orleans Avenue where the driver picked up I-10 West to the West Bank Expressway. Woodruff's body was later discovered near the General De Gaulle off ramp.
"We think the police have done a fantastic job of keeping us informed, we are still hopeful they will be able to find the driver of the car, but, as I said we are very thankful to the citizens of New Orleans and if anybody has additional information, especially any photographs or video from that night that may have details of the incident we would request that you come forward to the police," said Woodruff.
Police say they have not been able to get a picture of the car's license plate yet, that's why they're asking anyone with information or video to come forward.
As for Woodruff's family, they have a message for the driver, "if the driver is listening to this message, please come forward, we need closure for this incident, we need to know what happened, and I also understand this is probably the worst thing that has ever happened to you but the longer you wait the worse this is going to be and we need you to come forward," said Woodruff.
Police say they're looking for a black four-door sedan with tinted windows, possibly a Toyota Camry. If you have any information that could help investigators, call Crimestoppers.