Police: Driver faces charges for allegedly striking Lebanon crossing guard

A woman who declined to identify herself, center, apologizes to school crossing guard Willie Downing, 87, second from left, on Monday afternoon, March 4, 2024, near Mount Lebanon Elementary in West Lebanon, N.H. Downing was struck by a vehicle while controlling traffic during morning drop-off at the intersection of White Ave. and Highland Ave. He was talking with Faye Gillespie, and her daughter Maggie, 7, right, and John Stone, 11, and his mother Jenny Armstrong, about the incident when the woman approached to speak to him. She did not admit to hitting Downing. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

A woman who declined to identify herself, center, apologizes to school crossing guard Willie Downing, 87, second from left, on Monday afternoon, March 4, 2024, near Mount Lebanon Elementary in West Lebanon, N.H. Downing was struck by a vehicle while controlling traffic during morning drop-off at the intersection of White Ave. and Highland Ave. He was talking with Faye Gillespie, and her daughter Maggie, 7, right, and John Stone, 11, and his mother Jenny Armstrong, about the incident when the woman approached to speak to him. She did not admit to hitting Downing. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. James M. Patterson

By JOHN LIPPMAN

Valley News Staff Writer

Published: 03-07-2024 7:16 AM

Modified: 03-07-2024 9:26 AM


LEBANON — A 20-year-old West Lebanon woman previously from New Jersey has been charged after a vehicle struck a school crossing guard after failing to stop at a crosswalk near Mount Lebanon Elementary School earlier this week.

Atlantis Alpheaus was charged with a misdemeanor count of conduct after an accident in addition to reckless driving, a violation level offense, and is scheduled to appear in Lebanon District Court next Monday, Lebanon police said in a news release on Wednesday afternoon.

The incident on Monday at Mount Lebanon Elementary School came about a month after another driver failed to stop at a school bus stop in West Lebanon and knocked down a 10-year-old girl who was crossing the road to board. Charges also are expected to be filed against the driver of the vehicle in that incident, Lebanon Police Chief Phil Roberts said on Wednesday.

Alpheaus is alleged to have driven away from the scene after the vehicle she was driving clipped an 87-year-old school crossing guard when he approached to speak with her after she failed to come to a full stop.

The crossing guard, who was directing traffic for students arriving in the morning, was not injured in the incident and the driver later that afternoon returned to the crossing to apologize, but she declined to identify herself at the time to a Valley News photographer.

Following the incident, Lebanon police began a search to identify the operator of the vehicle who left the scene.

Roberts on Wednesday said police were able to identify Alpheaus as the suspect through video footage provided by “a resident in the area.” Roberts said he did not have additional information about Alpheaus other than she resided in an apartment “up behind the school.”

Contact information for Alpheaus was not immediately available.

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Roberts also said on Wednesday that he expects a complaint will be brought soon against the 87-year-old female driver who struck a 10-year-old girl when she was crossing South Main Street to board the school bus in West Lebanon month.

On Wednesday, the student’s mother, Jennifer Meade, said her daughter is recovering physically from the incident “but emotionally is not doing great.”

She said her daughter is having a follow-up appointment with the neurologist because she is “still have some short-term memory issues” and has “a limp in one leg” from “landing pretty hard on both knees” on the road due to the impact from the vehicle.

“She’s going to require long-term physical therapy,” Meade said.

Although Meade said her daughter looks largely healed on the outside, she nonetheless will be starting therapy soon because she is struggling with “nightmares about the incident.” 

“She’s going to have ramifications from this for a very long time,” Meade said.

Contact John Lippman at jlippman@vnews.com.