NJ man charged with fatal hit-and-run of 61-year-old woman

🚗 A 70-year-old man has been charged with running away from a pedestrian

Victim worked at Jesuit High School in North Jersey

⏰ Police arrested suspect less than 24 hours after crash

KARLSTADT — A Passaic man was arrested in connection with a fatal hit-and-run in Bergen county on Friday night.

According to the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, the victim was Deborah Peko-Lillis, 61, of Secaucus, who was crossing Hoboken Road in Karlstadt around 10:15 p.m. It was rear-ended by a year model Toyota RAV-4.

First responders quickly arrived on the scene and transferred her to Hackensack University Medical Center.

The next day, authorities arrested 70-year-old Justinian Cuevasmetemi. Prosecutors identified him as a Toyota driver and charged him with fleeing the crash after crashing into Peko Lilith. He is being held at Bergen County Jail.

It’s a Toyota RAV-4. (toyota.com/Canva)

It’s a Toyota RAV-4. (toyota.com/Canva)

Cuevasmetemi is charged with second-degree charges of walking away from the scene of a fatal crash and third-degree charges of endangering an injured victim. According to prosecutors, he was also issued a number of motor vehicle subpoenas.

🙏 Karlstadt hit-and-run victim worked at a Jesuit school in New Jersey

Peko-Lillis worked as a database manager at Saint Peter’s Preparatory School, a Jesuit high school in Jersey City.

Michael Gomez, president of Saint Peter’s Prep, told New Jersey 101.5 that Peko-Lillis is a “proud Prep mom” who has worked at the school for more than a decade. Her son Kyle graduated from St. Peters Prep in 2010.

“The entire St. Peter’s Prep community is deeply saddened by the sudden passing of our dear friend and colleague Debbie Peko Lilith,” Gomez said. In her heart, she left her mark on all of us and was a memorable part of the Prep family she loved.Our love and prayers are with Debbie’s family during this difficult time.”

Rick Rickman is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at richard.rickman@townsquaremedia.com.

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