Hartford father of 3 killed in hit-and-run; Police searching for suspect

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HARTFORD -- Police need public's help in finding driver involved in fatal hit and run over the weekend that killed a father of three.

Luis A. Maldonado, 34, of Hartford was struck and killed in a hit-and-run while working on his car in  the area of Campfield Avenue and Preston Street at about 5 a.m. Sunday. Police said a was outside changing a tire on his car when he was hit by an oncoming vehicle and thrown down the road.

Emergency crews rushed to Maldonado's aid, only to find he had succumbed to critical injuries sustained by the impact. He was pronounced dead by emergency crews within minutes of their arrival on scene.

Maldonado's mother, Maritza DeJesus, is hoping that the suspect comes forward. "I'm sure he has a family too, but I don't hold anything against him. It was an accident," she said of the Mother's Day crash.

DeJesus says her son had three kids,  ages 13, 10, and seven.  "He worked three jobs. He loved the one at Park Place because he loved to help the older people. If they didn't have any family, any food, he would buy. He would celebrate their birthdays.  He was a good dad. He loved his kids," said DeJesus.

Police are looking for a black 2000-2003 Nissan Maxima that was travelling west on Preston Street, then sped off turning in an unknown direction on Maple Avenue. The car will have sustained heavy front end damage on the passenger side.

Police don't believe Maldonado was intentionally hit and the investigation is ongoing. Reconstruction squads stayed on scene Sunday morning, working to determine how the accident occurred.

Fernando Maldonado, Luis' stepson, said, "My stepson is deeply missed, and for the person who did this: turn yourself in, show some sympathy.  You're going to have to live with this for the rest of your life."

Anyone with any information about the crash is asked to contact police.