Video: Erin Jackson, busted in East High hit-and-run, is a teacher and slam poet

erin jackson mug shot final 205x205.jpg
Pics, videos below.
Update: As soon as we got a look at Erin Jackson, the thirty-year-old woman arrested for this week's brutal hit-and-run that critically injured an East High School student -- see our original coverage below -- it was clear she didn't fit the a typical criminal stereotype. Turns out, though, that her background makes the act for which she's been accused even more incongruous.

Jackson is a fifth-grade teacher at an Aurora charter school, as well as a past slam poetry competitor.

Just after 7 a.m. on Wednesday, as we've reported, a gray, four-door sedan was traveling down Colfax near Elizabeth when it struck a sixteen-year-old student in a crosswalk. The vehicle didn't stop, leaving the student in the middle of a busy intersection -- East is on one side of the street, the Tattered Cover and Twist & Shout are on the other -- with severe injuries.

Here's footage of the accident. Be warned: Even though the impact is seen from a distance, it's still jarring:

The girl was raced to a nearby hospital, where she's currently reported to be in stable condition with a head injury. Meanwhile, a citywide alert went out for the driver of the vehicle, originally described as a white or Hispanic woman in her early thirties.

Then, at around 4:30 a.m. yesterday, after a presumably sleepless night, Jackson turned herself in to authorities, and the car -- a Chevy Malibu -- was recovered. Denver police revealed her identity at an emotional news conference late yesterday afternoon, and it didn't take the media long to figure out that she teaches fifth grade girls at AXL Academy in Aurora. Here's her bio from the school's website:

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Erin Jackson AXL portrait.
Erin Jackson recently moved to Colorado and is originally from Lawrence, Massachusetts. Erin is passionate about learning, helping her students acquire an authentic understanding of the world and enjoys slam poetry. Erin received her B.A. in History and Education and her Master in Health Education at Boston University. Erin is looking forward to exploring Colorado, but will miss the ocean!
The mention of slam poetry isn't a casual one, as is clear from a 2010 profile of her in Worcester Mag. The article begins like so:Erin Jackson is a member of the Worcester slam poetry team and recently placed seventh in the individual category of the national competition in Austin, Texas. Born in Lawrence, she graduated from Pentucket Regional High School in West Newbury and earned a BA in history from Hampshire College in Amherst. She teaches at the Montrose School in Medfield.In the Q&A, Jackson responds to a question about performance anxiety, saying she's never had it. "I am much more comfortable reading in front of a thousand people, rather than one-on-one," she allows. "The big groups don't scare me. The anxiety is writing a piece and saying what I want it to be."

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AXL Academy.
Did she suffer a kind of performance anxiety Wednesday morning, freezing up and driving on rather than stopping and aiding a teenager, as one would expect most dedicated teachers to do? Hard to say. But because she fled, she'll face even more severe sanctions than if she'd stuck around thanks to newly toughened hit-and-run laws inspired by Tim Albo, another hit-and-run victim who continues to face health challenges two years or so later.

In the meantime, AXL Academy's head, Audra Philippon, has released the following statement:

"We are shocked to learn of Erin's involvement in this terrible accident. We can confirm that Erin has been employed as an intermediate teacher at AXL for approximately eight months. We are keeping the victim in our thoughts and prayers and wish her a full recovery. At this time, our top priority is supporting our students as they learn of this sad news."

Here's reports about Jackson, who's expected to make her first court appearance today, from 9News, along with a 7News piece and a larger look at her mug shot. That's followed by our previous coverage.

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Erin Jackson.
Continue for our previous coverage, including photos and videos.

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45 comments
Moonstuck
Moonstuck

Please fix the video of the hit and run, either you, or whatever A-hole uploaded it set it to private so I can't see it.

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

Teachers are my favorite people for many many reasons . I get real bummed when negative attention finds itself pointing in the educator's direction . Society does FAR TOO little in acknowledging & recognizing the crucial role the teacher attributes to life in general .

Teachers = Most unappreciated / Most Essential 

I hope it works out for everyone, (INCLUDING THE TEACHER !), & a FULL recovery for the injured student !

D.c. Small
D.c. Small

I know she'll get charged with a hit and run, but at least she turned herself in.

mntnlvr
mntnlvr

She looks a lot older than 30, more like 40 or 45, and no muscle tone; very poor  physical condition. Is the stop sign hard to see? What's her reasoning behind barreling through a stop sign? 

Tavis Moustachio Alley
Tavis Moustachio Alley

So glad she turned herself in. It is inhumane, regardless of the repercussions, to leave an innocent child to possibly die in a busy intersection -- or any human for that matter. We need to get past our disconnect from those who share the space around us. If she had struck one of her own students maybe she would have stopped, but I think the child being a stranger made it easier for her to hit the gas. No one's life is worth the escape of prosecution.

Eleu Vazquez
Eleu Vazquez

"I'm the NRA and I vote" now i see you're the typical criminal stereotype you psycho NRA gun nut mass shooter...yes I just stereotyped you. But you cant get upset about it because that would make you "hypersensitive"

Stephan Reuchlein
Stephan Reuchlein

she probably had an AR15 in her car and needed to get rid of it. :-¦

Stephan Reuchlein
Stephan Reuchlein

oh please, so hypersensitive, very doubtful about race, go cry to your mother. Maybe if you weren't so offended by everything you would be a happier person. They didn't say, oh she's white, no way she could have done it......

Eleu Vazquez
Eleu Vazquez

To Stephan who said "Don't make this about race." Notice the author says " AS SOON AS WE GOT A LOOK AT ERIN JACKSON".... So how could her LOOK be referring to her profession as you suggest???????......Its easy to dismiss racial stereotypes when you don't have to deal with them on a regular basis and actually pay close attention......Here's the full quote from the article. Read it again....."As soon as we got a look at Erin Jackson, the thirty-year-old woman arrested for this week's brutal hit-and-run that critically injured an East High School student -- see our original coverage below -- it was clear she didn't fit the a typical criminal stereotype."

Timmy Garofalo
Timmy Garofalo

And we wonder why our education system is flawed!! We have wombats like her in a position if authority

Sara Sands Mayo
Sara Sands Mayo

This whole thing is very upsetting because she acted on pure selfishness rather than an utter concern for an injured person, and did not immediately take responsibility for her mistake, which is exactly what teachers try to teach to their students when they're not teaching academics! If anything good is going to come from this digital age of constant phone-video-camera, it's that it will force people to take responsibility for their actions. What a shame.

Kyle Buss
Kyle Buss

I bet she SMOKES MARIJUANA!!!

Archerclove
Archerclove

I hope this won't take a horrible slide downhill - it is a tragic thing for a lot of folks.  Could this be turned into a teachable moment?  We need to hear what was going on?  Was the teacher texting?  There are lots of questions to be answered.  PLEASE don't turn this into a political or nasty discussion.  You are talking about a lot of kids.  Not just the dear, dear girl who is fighting for her health but the young students at AXL.

And, really?  Did you have to bring sexual orientation into the argument?  Please take your nastiness to a more appropriate, not that there is one, context.

Erica Rosenthal
Erica Rosenthal

You don't have to have a criminal background to be a selfish bitch

mkdi
mkdi

STOP THE PRESSES REARWORD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It cant be true!!!!! A lesbian teacher slam poet did this? This isn't the stereotype? Who's stereotype?

The stereotype that lesbian teacher slam poets have of criminals? If we had more lesbian slam poet teachers we could indoctrinate the kids to stereotype too. Oh wait, we already do. Then we could get asswipe rags like rearword to write articles about how lesbian teacher slam poets couldn't possibly do such terrible things like leave students to die in the street. Oh wait, you just did that. Cant we find a white rich male to blame?

Were off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of sodomites and socialism.

Charlie Whiskey
Charlie Whiskey

It's kinda like when something terrible happens, in the suburbs, and people interviewed are like "I can't believe something like this could happen here!" and it's like "uh, every time something like this DOES happen, it's in a place like where you live..."

David Kotzebue
David Kotzebue

They usually have to go sober up b4 turning themselves in.

Stephan Reuchlein
Stephan Reuchlein

Dont make this a race thing, I am sure they are referring to her profession.

David Maestas
David Maestas

Right she does not "look" the type, which was why she was originally described as white OR hispanic. I.e. a "Hispanic" would have been the type? ?

Stephan Reuchlein
Stephan Reuchlein

She took off because the laws are so lop sided. Even if it was an accident, the driver always gets sued regardless because no one wants to accept responsibility, they look for others to blame. It is expensive to defend yourself even if innocent. Then comes the lawsuit and the defendant ends up broke. I do not condone leaving the scene but I do understand why it happens.

Randall Erkelens
Randall Erkelens

Being a teacher and turning herself in, I'm sure it will come-in in some way.. and if it was distracted driving, hopefully this serves as a good lesson for all. It's really hard not to engage electronic devices in the car. Really hard. But we all need to to avoid these types of accidents. I have two teen drivers now (16 and 17).. so the topic is top dog in our house. And as a parent, a positive example of not doing it is very important.

Denver Becca
Denver Becca

I feel so bad for her but I'm glad she turned herself in. I'm glad to hear the victim is now in stable condition because how much worse would it have been if she had killed the girl? She has to feel just awful as it is. I wonder about it being a case of distracted driving. I guess we'll hear soon enough.

Randall Erkelens
Randall Erkelens

There's a few reasons why people run lights. Late, texting, changing radio or glare, etc. I'd bet if she was texting, we'll know via phone records. Not stopping is an entirely different issue. Being a teacher would prompt some serious questions why she didn't. I can only imagine she was in shock. Either way, I'm glad she did the right thing eventually.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@mntnlvr  = Retard

There is no Stop Sign at that intersection, moron.


frustrated
frustrated

@Tavis Alley maybe she didn't know she hit someone...anyone think that maybe something happened to the teacher too???  That is someone's family you are criticizing...perhaps a person who is kins...don't make her out to be a monster.

frustrated
frustrated

@Sara Sands Mayo HELLO EVERYONE...did you ever think that maybe the teacher herself had something happen to her...maybe she didn't know she hit someone???  I'm sorry for the person who got hit, but I'm also sorry for the person behind the wheel.  Put yourself in her shoes...She is not a criminal, she is a kind loving woman, with a kind loving family...Know your facts before you start mouthing off about people you don't know.  As far as I'm concerned you all have nothing better to do than judge people you don't even know.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

@Sara Sands Mayo Thoughtful post, Sara. Thanks.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

@Randall Erkelens It'll be interesting to see if distracted driving played a role. Thanks for the post, Randall.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Denver Becca 

EAST BOUND Colfax, Early Morning = directly INTO THE SUN!

Try it!


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Randall Erkelens 

EARLY Morning, EAST BOUND on Colfax = SUN GLARE!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Timothy Black  ... as live street theater.


mntnlvr
mntnlvr

Chill, donkey brains. So for a moment I thought she ran a stop sign. So sue me. I don't hang out at that intersection, and my teleportation device hasn't been working lately, so pardon me for thinking "stop sign" instead of red light. Go back under your rock now.
 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@frustrated  ... she may have been suffering from a minor stroke, or hypoglycemia ... or SHOCK from the horror of hitting someone.


fognl7
fognl7

@DonkeyHotay 

Emergence of sun glare doesn't mitigate the the fact that the driver (allegedly) ran a red light and left the scene of the accident.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@fognl7 ... it certainly DOES explain the cause of the accident, sun glare on Colfax due to its specific orientation is EXTREME at certain times of the day -- rendering it nearly IMPOSSIBLE to see, at any speed, and appearing without warning between building shadows.

See the Video, note the EXACT sun angle and shadow placement prior to the intersection.

Better yet, drive that exact intersection at that exact time in the A.M. and see for yourself.

And once again -- remaining at the scene of the accident does not change or alter the victim's injuries -- she would have suffered the same broken bones and head injuries.



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