NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - A 21-year-old Piscataway man was charged in the hit-and-run accident in which a New Brunswick vice principal was struck and killed during what authorities said was a bunch of drivers drag racing in Piscataway.
Freddy S. Garcia was arrested Thursday and charged with first-degree aggravated manslaughter in the death of Tyrone Harrison, 49, of Somerset, Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew Carey and Piscataway police Chief Scott Cartmell said in a joint statement.
Garcia is also charged with second-degree knowingly leaving the scene of an accident resulting in death, third-degree causing death while driving with a suspended license and fourth-degree making a false report to law enforcement officers.
Authorities said Garcia has a suspended driver's license and was driving an unregistered and uninsured vehicle that had fictitious plates and no inspection sticker. After Harrison was struck, Garcia abandoned the car and fled, then later reported the car stolen, authorities said.
Carey, in the statement, said police had received tips that led to the arrest.
“We sincerely thank all who came forward with timely information which aided the investigation and led to the current charges,” the prosecutor said.
“We are continuing to gather evidence of this reckless criminal activity. Our thoughts and prayers remain with all of Mr. Harrison’s loved ones," Carey said.
Harrison was walking from the Edison train station to a relative's home at 9:17 p.m. Saturday when he was struck by a car on Stelton Avenue near Ethel Avenue in Piscataway, authorities said. They said Garcia lost control of the car just before Harrison was struck.
They said several cars were drag racing on Stelton Avenue at the time, and that Harrison was struck by a 2003 Honda Accord.
Garcia also faces a charge of hindering police as well as 12 motor vehicle summons, including reckless driving, racing on highway, leaving the scene involving personal injury, and failure to report the collision.
Garcia is tentatively scheduled to appear in New Brunswick via video for his initial court appearance on Friday.
Police are still investigating this case and ask that anybody with information call Piscataway police Officer Meredith Robbins at (732) 562-7652 or Detective Berman of the prosecutor's office (732) 745-4328.
Harrison had been in the New Brunswick school district since 2001, starting as a special education teacher and later becoming a vice principal at the high school.
He is survived by his wife and their son.