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Family Man Headed Home From Work Dies In Hit And Run

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Leonel Lopez Hernandez and children (credit: CBS 2)

Leonel Lopez Hernandez and children (credit: CBS 2)

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NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A New Jersey husband and father was killed in a hit-and-run crash, and his widowed wife wants police to track down those responsible.

Francisca Lopez, a 24-year-old mother of two with another baby on the way, clutched pictures of her late husband on Thursday night in New Brunswick. She¬† said she needs police “to find whoever hit her husband so they can punished to the full extent of the law.”

She told CBS 2′s Derricke Dennis that 26-year-old Leonel Lopez Hernandez was killed riding his bike home from work.

Hernandez was struck and killed at the intersection of Georges Road and South Talmadge Street on Wednesday at around 10:30 p.m. The location is less than a mile from his job as a custodian at Bristol-Myers Squibb.

“They just left him there. Somebody else called the police. The one that struck him ran away,” said Patricia Zarate, a relative who came to comfort Lopez.

Zarate said the driver took a loving father, husband, son and brother, working to make a living for his family.

“And he wasn’t doing anything bad. He was getting out of work, straight to home,” Zarate said.

Just steps away from the accident scene there are a number of signs, warning of children at play and speed humps ahead. Investigators said speed is likely a factor in the hit and run.

Through her tears, Lopez expressed anger at her husband’s killer, but did leave a card and white flowers at scene that reads “This is for you my love. Rest in peace. I will always remember and love you.”

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