NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A 2-year-old was in critical condition at a New Jersey hospital after a hit-and-run crash on Mother’s Day.
Police tracked down the driver, who was quickly arrested, CBS2’s Reena Roy reported.
The victim’s family lives in a nearby apartment building. It was just a short walk to church across the street on Sunday morning when little Eno Jameson was hit while walking alone. The driver simply took off.
“Sad on Mother’s Day. It’s not meant to be this way,” said Itoro Jameson, the victim’s father, adding when asked why his daughter was alone outside, “[My wife] thought she was with me. I thought she was with her and I think she came out the door herself.”
Surveillance video shows the pick-up truck that police said hit the 2-year-old and then just kept going, right after two cars narrowly miss her as she lies badly injured in the middle of Brookdale Avenue near 18th Avenue.
“This morning when I came here there were a lot of police here and a little kid was crossing the street and then I guess the car hit the little girl,” family friend Nagela Saint Fleur said.
Police said 26-year-old Romane Errol Sr. of Newark was behind the wheel when he slammed into the toddler just before 9:40 a.m. Detectives discovered his truck nearby shortly after and took him into custody.
Meanwhile, the young girl was rushed away by emergency workers to University Hospital with rib fractures, a double collapsed lung and lung lacerations.
“She’s blinking her eyes. That’s all she can do for now,” Itoro Jameson said. “My life. She’s my life.”
Friends said the family was on their way to a Sunday service at church but instead ended up at their little girl’s side in the hospital praying for her recovery.
“They were coming to our church,” Saint Fleur said. “Nice people, very nice.”
Officials said the suspect was driving with a suspended and expired license. He was charged with operating a motor vehicle without a valid license and causing serious bodily injury.