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Office of Public Information (609) 882-2000
Capt. Gerald Lewis - ext. 6516
SFC Stephen Jones - ext. 6513
Sgt. Julian Castellanos - ext. 6515
Det Brian Polite - ext. 6514

December 23, 2009

Hit N Run Driver Charged By NJSP

New Jersey State Police detectives from the Bloomfield barracks on the Garden State Parkway have charged a Union, New Jersey man for the hit and run crash that killed one man and injured two others on December 18th.  Today, Jose Beltran, 49, turned himself in to troopers and was charged with:

  • Leaving the scene of a fatal motor vehicle accident
  • Leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident involving serious bodily injury
  • Endangering an injured victim (three counts)

Judge Kaimu F. Hill-Harvey (Irvington) set bail for Beltran at $100,000 with a 10% option.

Beltran was represented by Tony Fusco, Esq. of Passaic.  Beltran was posting bail as of late Wednesday afternoon. 

The vehicle he was driving, a 2002 black Lincoln Navigator, matched the description that State Police detectives put out to the media last Friday afternoon.  Beltran told detectives that the vehicle belongs to a friend.  Troopers recovered that Navigator yesterday after Beltran had contacted detectives to reveal its location.  Troopers had it towed to Totowa station where it was impounded and processed by Troop B Crime Scene Investigations. 

The Essex County Prosecutor's Office has been involved from the beginning of this investigation.  They were consulted before the issuance of today's charges.

The initial crash occurred at about 4:00 a.m. last Friday morning when three men were outside of their 1992 Honda Accord fixing a flat tire when the Navigator driven by Beltran struck all three men.  Ricci Chicas, 21, of Garfield was killed, Shannel Diaz, 21, of North Bergen received a shoulder injury and was taken to University Hospital in Newark.  Jonathan Mentor, 20, of North Bergen received minor injuries.

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