Driver accused in deadly Lakewood hit-and-run faces judge

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The driver accused of killing a 15-year-old boy and injuring his father in a hit-and-run crash in Lakewood faced a judge Tuesday.

Alexander Politan, 31, is facing charges of causing the death of another while driving with a suspended license. Authorities say that he is responsible for the death of Jesus Lopez-Grande.

Lopez-Grande was walking along Oak Street in Lakewood around 9 p.m. on Oct. 4 with his father when he was hit by a black Jeep Cherokee allegedly driven by Politan. Lopez-Grande had been working at the Dunkin' on Route 9 earlier that night.

"He was going to get a taxi but he called his dad and his dad was like halfway here and he didn't want to leave his dad so he walked with his dad,” says friend and co-worker Daniel Sanchez.

RELATED: Police make arrest in Lakewood hit-and-run that killed teen 
RELATED: Police locate vehicle in hit-and-run that killed teen in Lakewood 

The father and son were just south of Albert Avenue when they were hit. Police say that the vehicle had severe damage.

Politan turned himself in to place a few days later.

Politan’s attorney says that his client did not think that he hit a person that night and only found the car damaged the next morning.

Lopez-Grande attended Lakewood High School where he played tennis and ran track.

"He was great he was a great kid. He was joyful. Whenever I was down he would bring us up, motivated us,” Sanchez says.

Lopez-Grande's  funeral was also held Monday.

Politan will be back in court for a detention hearing later this week.

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