The Lakewood Police Department arrested the suspected driver who hit and critically injured a Chaveirim member, Moshe Guttmann, and then fled the scene, according to a statement released by the Chaveirim of Lakewood.
A family member of the victim who did not give up searching for the vehicle spotted the possible match to the Chevy Astro van parked in the rear of an East 5th Street home, according to the statement.
The family member questioned someone outside the residence regarding the damage to the vehicle, and was told it was involved in an accident last week. He immediately called police, according to the statement.
Upon arrival the officers determined the damage to be consistent with the damage described by the Traffic & Safety Officers. After questioning the suspect for some time, the man was taken into Police Headquarters for further interviewing and was arrested a short time ago, according to the statement.
Moshe has since then undergone numerous surgeries and was released from the hospital on Friday to rehab, according to the statement.
"The arrest of the suspect will obviously not heal the wounds inflicted on Moshe, but it is with much happiness that we receive this news," the statement read.
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The statement also read:
"Lakewood Chaveirim extends its deepest thanks to: the Lakewood Police Dept., Ocean County prosecutors and the county sheriff’s department, Police Chief Robert C. Lawson, Mayor Isaac Ackerman, Police Commissioner Meir Lichtenstein, Police Sgt. Frank Work, Patrolman David Silberstein,and Officer Menck of Traffic and Safety, and the numerous police officers and detectives who stopped at nothing to resolve this case. We would also like to thank the officers and crossing guards who spent hours out in the cold & snow distributing about 1,500 fliers with information about the accident.
"We would also like to thank the local Policemen’s Benevolent Association, the Sergeant and Officers Association, and LCSW, for helping us offer a reward of $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the driver.
"Special thank you to the residents of Lakewood, and the surrounding towns that have reached out to the Lakewood Police Dept. with numerous tips of vehicles matching the description."