Man arrested in fatal Ocean View hit and run crash killing Mom of two

Posted at 6:24 PM, Jul 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-27 18:24:30-04

NORFOLK, Va. - Norfolk Police have arrested a man in connection with a fatal hit and run crash killing an Ocean View Mom who was riding a bicycle Friday night.

Phillip J. Harrison, 37, of Norfolk, was charged with Driving Under the Influence shortly after the crash.

"It's a form of justice so for that, I'm thankful to everyone involved in capturing this person," said Zachary Allen Velez, who is the son of the victim.

Eirca Zankli's bike. Photo Courtesy of Zachary Allen Velez

Search warrants state 54-year-old Erica Zankli was riding her bicycle in the curb lane of East Ocean View Avenue before being hit from the rear by a Toyota Tacoma pick up truck with Virginia license plates. Her bike was lit up with neon green lights. The court documents say a witness saw the driver, who is described as a white male with dreadlocks, stop by Zankli and drove off without helping.

An investigation gave Police an address off Benningfield Court, according to court documents. The house wasn't registered to Harrison, but he was living there with his girlfriend.

The court documents state a detective noticed Harrison had a recently shaved head and there was hair consistent with dreadlocks on the floor of the bathroom. That detective also noticed Harrison's breath had the smell of alcohol on it and Harrison had bloodshot glassy eyes and difficulty maintaining balance, said the search warrants.

Detectives had to assist Harrison into the back of a patrol car for Harrison's safety. The court documents go on to say Harrison invoked his right to counsel, so detectives did not question him. However, on several occasions, Harrison said he had been drinking even though he was not asked.

The search warrants state Police arrested Harrison Saturday.