Owner of Soapie's dry cleaning in Evanston critically injured in hit-and-run captured on video

Eric Horng Image
Wednesday, February 22, 2023
Popular business owner critically injured in hit-and-run in Evanston
Yun Park, the owner of popular Evanston dry cleaner Soapie's, was critically injured in a hit-and-run at Chicago and Dempster, all caught on video.

EVANSTON, Ill. (WLS) -- An Evanston business owner was struck and critically injured in a hit-and-run in a crosswalk, which was caught on video.

Yun Park, 53, was crossing Chicago Avenue at Dempster Street at about 6:20 a.m. on Feb. 8 when she was struck by a left-turning vehicle. The entire incident was captured by surveillance cameras.

"It's been incredibly difficult," said Stephen Passen, the victim's attorney. "This is an accident that is catastrophic in a lot of ways."

The driver kept going after she was struck.

Park suffered serious head injuries, and now, almost two weeks later, she continues to need care.

Investigators are asking residents and business owners west and north of the corner of Chicago and Dempster to come forward with more surveillance images.

"Although we do have that video surveillance, we could use more. So it's really important for the public's help," said Evanston police Sgt. Scott Sophier.

Park is well-known in her Evanston neighborhood as the long-time owner of Soapie's dry cleaning and tailoring, just south of where she was struck.

"It's clear to us in speaking to the victim's family, local residents, and business owners that she's very loved and cared for by the Evanston community," Sophier said.

Police said their investigation was delayed because it wasn't immediately clear Park had been hit by a vehicle. Police said she was unable to speak, and no witnesses reported a crash. It wasn't until last weekend, when Park's family came forward with surveillance video that the search for the driver began.

Police say the vehicle involved is a small to mid-sized white SUV, resembling a Nissan Rogue.