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CHP: Hit-and-run suspect stopped at Penngrove market after collision

After allegedly driving into a bicycle rider on Petaluma Hill Road, a Rohnert Park man stopped to buy milk at a nearby market and then went to work, the CHP reported Sunday.

An ongoing CHP investigation showed Robert Cowart, 68, went about his day after hitting cyclist Steve Norwick on Friday morning, officials said.

Norwick, 68, suffered grave injuries and Sunday remained in intensive care at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital in critical condition.

His family and friends have been gathered at the hospital. They are grateful for the outpouring of care they've gotten from the community, said his daughter, Rebecca Norwick of Windsor.

"We're hanging in there. We have a lot of support from friends and family," she said.

"Just watch and wait," she said. "There's no change. He's not better, but he's not worse. He's in a coma with a severe head injury."

She declined to comment about the collision or the suspect in the hit-and-run. "Right now we're thinking about my dad."

After Friday's 8:30 a.m. collision, Cowart stopped at the Palace of Fruit on Old Redwood Highway and Ely Road, said CHP Sgt. Cathy Miglio. He then went to his well-drilling business on Fair Street in Petaluma. He was reportedly meeting people interested in buying his equipment, as he was looking to retire.

Later Friday afternoon, Cowart went home. He backed his damaged truck into his driveway, according to two law enforcement officers who live nearby and were outside talking about the crash when Cowart pulled up to his home.

They watched him park, with the damaged front end facing the street for anyone to see, they said. They realized the Dodge Ram pickup appeared to be the one CHP officers were looking for in connection with the morning's hit-and-run crash.


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